In 2017, PrairieFest will look much different than it has in recent years.PrairieFest

The 54th annual PrairieFest Arts and Music Festival will begin Aug. 18 in Wilson Park and last for three days.

This year, there will be many additions to this fundraising event for the Arkansas City Area Arts Council.

Art in the Park returns

“We are so excited to announce that Art in the Park is back with exciting new prizes,” said Ark City Arts Director Charissa Perdaris.

Art in the Park will be a juried art competition and participants will be eligible for up to $1,000 in prizes.

Booth space to participate in Art in the Park costs $40 and artists are encouraged to give an art demonstration at their booth.

A prize will be awarded for Best Demonstration, Best in Show, and Best 2-D and Best 3-D works.

The winning artist of the Best in Show category also will earn a solo artist exhibition in the newly launched Ark City Arts gallery in 2018.

The winners of the juried art competition will be announced during the festival on Aug. 19.

Other new events

This year, PrairieFest will begin with a family magic show in Wilson Park.

At 6 p.m. Aug. 18, magician Landon Stark will be on hand to “dazzle and delight kids and adults of all ages,” according to a news release from Ark City Arts.

“Also added to this year’s event lineup is Yoga in the (Grass) and our Dart for Art Run,” Perdaris said.

Yoga in the Grass will be at 10 a.m. Aug. 19 in Wilson Park and is taught by Kerry Schnackenberg, from Yoga Synergy.

Those wishing to participate in the Dart for Art Run can register online.

This year’s festival also will feature balloon twisting and face painting, among other activities.

Battle of the Bands

Aug. 19 also will feature the Battle of the Bands, a new competition that is open to all genres of music.

Battle of the Bands applications must be received at the Ark City Arts office, located at 116 S. Summit St., by Aug. 7.

Application forms can be found online.

The competition is open to anyone 18 or older, and all genres are welcomed and encouraged.

Bands will be eligible for $4,000 in prizes.

Photo competition

“In addition to these exciting new competitions, we are pleased to announce our new PrairieFest photo competition,” Perdaris said.

This contest is open to photographers of all ages and skill levels.

Participants are allowed to submit as many photographs as they wish.

There is no entry fee and the winning photograph will receive a prize of $100.

For more information about the 54th annual PrairieFest event lineup, to purchase tickets, or to sign up for Battle of the Bands, Art in the Park or the Dart For Art Run, visit