HISTORY – Armonk Outdoor Art Show

HISTORY

The Armonk Outdoor Art Show: A Long Tradition of Fine Art and Fine Crafts

In 1961, the Friends of the North Castle Public Library, including Charles Elson, Lucille Bruno and Jean West, decided to try an outdoor art exhibition as a way to raise funds. With only a handful of artists showing their work on the lawn of the Armonk Methodist Church bordering Main Street, the Armonk Outdoor Art Show was born. The show soon outgrew the churchyard and was relocated to the library’s parking lot.


Accompanying the small yet fine display of art in the early days were memorable cakes, pies and much-loved art show brownies, baked by volunteers in the church kitchen. Schultz's famous cider, from their iconic local farm stand, was always there to wash it all down.

We remember long-time Art Show and Friends of the North Castle Public Library volunteer, Bill Golub, who designed the iconic tree logo for the first show's poster in 1961. That tree, with its autumn-hued leaves, took center stage in the show's marketing through the years. Our newly updated logo pays homage to Bill's tree, which continues to endure.

As the show and its crowds grew, the venue again changed, first to the American Legion Field in front of Town Hall and finally to its current home at Community Park in 1997. Now, over half a century later, 185 exhibitors are chosen from hundreds of juried applicants from across the country and around the world. This celebration of fine art and fine crafts, displayed in our bucolic tree-lined park, has grown to become one of the nation's most highly rated art shows. Each year, thousands of art lovers come from near and far to see an ever-changing display of paintings, photography, sculpture, jewelry and more. Children’s activities and interactive art have helped to make this a family-friendly annual event.


As the show has grown, so too has its group of volunteers, now numbering 300. Every year, as one show winds down the next is already in the works. Behind all the brainstorming and community outreach is a hard-working and fun-loving group of people who strive to make the art show the best it can be. You, too, can be a part of the art show history. New volunteers and new ideas are always welcome!