Tuesday, October 06, 2009

Fun... the family got interviewed by a G.R. Press reporter

ArtPrize draws a crowd to Heartside shops

People find hidden treasures in downtown’s ‘outskirts’

BY NARDY BAEZA BICKEL

THE GRAND RAPIDS PRESS

Grand Rapids folk artist Reb Rob- erts has had a gallery on South Divi- sion Avenue for a decade.

But he credits ArtPrize for the doz- ens of people who in the past couple of weeks have made their way to the “outskirts” of the city’s downtown area to check out his brightly colored pictures.

“I’ve had people tell me ‘It’s been 50 years since I’ve walked South Di- vision’,” said Roberts, 54, owner of Sanctuary Folk Arts, 140 S. Division.

“There’s some nostalgia, they have lots of stories to tell. And this, too,

is becoming part of those stories.

“People are redis- covering (the area), finding treasures here.”

ArtPrize continued to draw crowds of people downtown Sunday, and many ventured into Heartside shops.

This was the fourth trip for Randy Buist, 43, who this time came with his wife, Kathy, and their children, Anna, 10, Jaden, 6, and Nadia, 3.

“It’s really exiting. We’ve grown up in West Michigan, and this is the most exciting thing in Grand Rapids in my lifetime,” Buist said.

Agreeing were Joyce and Philip Makinen, who were focusing on checking out South Division near downtown to find new artists.

“It’s been an incredible, exciting

SEE HEARTSIDE, A7

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