Things will be popping up all over A.C. at 48 Blocks

Sometimes, all you need is an idea for a great title. The rest can fall into place later.

That’s what happened for Lisa Honaker, dean of the School of Arts and Humanities at Stockton University.

“Somebody told me that Atlantic City was 48 blocks long,” she recalls. “I thought that’d be an excellent name for something.”

She wasn’t sure what exactly that “something” would be, but she kept that phrase in the back of her head.

It wasn’t until a meeting with representatives from the Atlantic City Arts Foundation, who were looking to do a joint project with Stockton, that her title resurfaced.

“I mentioned it to them and they thought it would be a great name for an arts festival,” Honaker says.

That was last fall. Fast forward to present day, and the art festival “48 Blocks” will take place all over the 48 blocks of Atlantic City from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Saturday, June 24.

The all-day event will include live performances, art projects, garden tours, yoga and tai chi, ballet, puppet shows and other happenings broken up within six districts in A.C., encompassing all 48 blocks.

“We’re amazed that it’s coming together,” Honaker laughs. “We just wanted 48 projects, and we have well over that.

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“A lot is visual art, many murals, so some permanent work, but much will be temporary like a yarn bombing. What we’re thinking of it is pop-up art experiences all over the city — things where you wouldn’t expect to see them — like concerts on front porches or poets on jitneys going around city and stopping to read poems. We’ll also have 10 decorated bicycles that will be ridden around the city. And each ward was given Adirondack chairs that will be eventually installed on the Boardwalk within each ward.”

How to get around

Wards and blocks will be marked with the “48 Blocks” logo stenciled in chalk. To see what’s taking place in each, Honaker created an interactive Google map with a live link that guests can download on Saturday. “Everything will be posted by genre,” she says, so you can easily find the locations of the various artists such as Valerie Feo, who is painting a mural; Lennox Warner’s art exhibit; the Mud Girls’ clay project and Heather Deegan’s live chair painting.

Party on

The event ends with a celebration at the Noyes Arts Garage from 6 to 8 p.m. Here folks can enjoy live music by Locksmith and food by 15 A.C. eateries such as Angelo’s Fairmount Tavern, Gilchrist, A.C. Sweet & Treats and Tony Boloney’s, which is creating a special “48 Blocks” pizza with goat cheese and a vodka sauce made from “48 Blocks” vodka, a special local spirit created by Little Water Distillery specially for this project. Little Water is giving the Atlantic City Arts Foundation 50 cents for every bottle of 48 Blocks Vodka sold, to help support more project such as this.

“Putting on this event has been a real grassroots effort,” Honaker says. “It’s a big project with a lot of moving parts, but the community members have really run with it. We’re excited about giving residents and visitors a wide variety of ‘pop up’ art experiences … we want to really showcase what Atlantic City and its citizens have to offer.”

 

The original article can be found on The Press of Atlantic City.