Take Me To the River, which takes place September 15-23, has been dubbed the “festival of festivals.” That’s more than simple hyperbole, since it is literally a collection of various river town festivals all packaged into one large event. For nine days, festivalgoers can partake of art fairs, studio tours, poetry slams, concerts, and more at a dozen communities along the St. Croix River Valley—from St. Croix Falls to Prescott in Wisconsin, and from Hastings to Taylor’s Falls in Minnesota.
The first event of its kind took place in 2010, when art enthusiasts recognized that many art fairs and festivals were taking place during the same weekends in September. ArtReach St. Croix, a nonprofit organization supporting visual, literary, and performing arts in the St. Croix Valley, seized an opportunity to create partnerships, pool resources, and enable the many festivals to generate enthusiasm and participation for their individual events while encouraging people to hop around the valley to other art activities and performances.
Participating events in this year’s Take Me to the River include the Hastings Art Fair, Afton’s Art in the Park, The Sprit of the St. Croix Festival in Hudson, Marine Art Fair, Franconia Sculpture Park”s Arts and Artists Celebration, Rustic Road 13 Pottery Event, and Chateau St. Croix’s Fall Harvest Festival. Maps and itineraries will be available at ArtReach St. Croix in Stillwater, and at the Take Me To the River concierge tents at each participating festival. Check out the full schedule and itineraries online, and plan your trip—by car, bicycle, motorcycle, or even a boat.