7 Reasons to Love Mayfest
The 46th annual art festival set for May 17-20
It's a Tulsa institution, and one of the best weekends of the year. Grab your walking shoes, your sunblock and your appetite for all things art — Mayfest is back!
Tulsa International Mayfest is a family friendly outdoor tribute to the arts and music created to promote a broader knowledge of and appreciation for arts and humanities among serious, as well as casual, art lovers. More than 350,000 people are expected to attend this year’s event, celebrating 46 years of Mayfest. Mayfest offers art, vendors, food, music and beverages.
11 a.m. to 11 p.m. / Thursday, May 17 to Saturday, May 19
11 a.m. to 6 p.m. / Sunday, May 20
The festival takes place in Downtown Tulsa on Main Street starting on 3rd Street and going to 7th Street, the Green at 3rd between Main and Boston and 4th between Main and Boston. Third Street, 4th Street, 5th Street and 6th Street are closed from Boulder to Boston.
Tulsa International Mayfest offers a variety of activities for the entire family. Here are some of the highlights.
1. Unique new performance offerings
Live music has always been a huge draw at Mayfest, but with so much going on, it can be a bit overwhelming. The Lounge at 4th and Main offers an alternative performance setting which will feature acoustic sets, comedy and non-musical acts. Plus, you can sit down under a tent for a hot second. Sweet relief from what's sure to be a muggy day in May.
5 p.m. – 11 p.m. / Thursday, May 17 – Saturday, May 19
Noon to 5 p.m. / Sunday, May 20
2. Live t-shirt printing
You've read all about Mythic Press in our May issue — now you can see the boys in action at Mayfest! Watch them print your one-of-a-kind souvenir t-shirt right before your eyes.
Various hours / Thursday, May 17 – Sunday, May 20 / 5th & Main
3. Something for everyone — included the youngsters
It's hard to please everyone — especially squirrelly kids whining in chorus, "I'm boooooored, I'm tiiiiiired." Even the most precocious little art connoisseur may grow weary of perusing the myriad booths of art aimed at grown-ups. So, let the young ones blow off some steam in the KidZone.
KidZone offers hands-on experiences for children each day of the festival. Bring your children to KidZone to create art projects, chase bubbles, draw with sidewalk chalk, play catch in the park and listen to great musical performances on the KidZone Stage. KidZone is located at 6th and Main.
4. Indoor, air-conditioned galleries
Two art galleries, the Invitational Gallery and the Youth Art Gallery, make up this year’s Mayfest. Both galleries are now located side-by-side:
Williams Tower Lobby / 3rd & Main
11 a.m. – 6 p.m. / Thursday, May 17
11 a.m. – 8 p.m. / Friday, May 18
11 a.m. - 6 p.m. / Saturday, May 19
11 a.m. – 2 p.m. / Sunday, May 20
5. Free performances by Tulsa's most notable and emerging talent
More than 100 musicians and dancers grace three Mayfest stages. Here’s a complete four-day performance schedule. All performances are free.
6. Fair food and foodie fare
Outside of the State Fair, Mayfest is the best time to get absolutely everything deep fried on a stick. Indulge in your favorite guilty pleasures — funnel cakes, corndogs, curly fries — or try something new — gluten-free ice cream cones, barbecue parfait, alligator on a stick. Still waiting on the Pepto tent, so go ahead and bring your own...
Concession stands are open during all Mayfest hours. A food guide is available here.
7. ALL OF THE ART.
You like jewelry? We got you. Metal landscape sculptures? Done. Giant Technicolor paintings of musical instruments? Obviously.
Outside exhibits include market artists and juried artists. Artist booths are located on Main Street as well as along Sixth Street. Booths are open:
11 a.m. – 8 p.m. / Thursday, May 17 - Saturday, May 19
11 a.m. – 6 p.m. / Sunday, May 20