Some children check out a jet ski brought in by the Macomb County Sheriff’s Office during the Kids Fest event last year.

Some children check out a jet ski brought in by the Macomb County Sheriff’s Office during the Kids Fest event last year.

Photo provided by Thom Dionne

Appetite for Art and Kids Fest to take place this weekend

By: Kara Szymanski | Shelby - Utica News | Published July 15, 2019


UTICA — The city of Utica has some fun summer events coming up for the community to come out and enjoy.

On July 20 and 21, the city is rolling out its annual Appetite for Art and Kids Fest.

Hosted by the Utica Parks and Recreation Commission, both events will be held in Grant Park, located at 8243 Hahn St. Prior versions of Appetite for Art were held at Grant Park for many years, except last year.

Appetite for Art
The annual Appetite for Art festival will be held from 11 a.m. to 7 p.m. July 20 and from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. July 21.

The festival, formerly known as the Old Mill Arts and Crafts Festival, was held last year at Jacqueline K. Noonan Riverwalk Park/Memorial Park, but it will return to Grant Park this year.

The event will include an art sale, live entertainment, face painting, a children’s play area, a food truck rally and approximately 50 vendors with a variety of items. Admission to the event is free.

“This is the first year we are running the art and craft show with the kids festival, which we believe will increase the foot traffic for the art show,” Beth Ricketts, Utica city clerk and a member of the Parks and Recreation Commission, stated in an email.

Kids Fest
Kids Fest is a family-friendly event in its second year that offers free admission.

The festival will open at noon each day during Appetite for Art and will feature attractions including bounce houses, water obstacles, food trucks, face painting, Home Depot youth kits and more.

Entry to the bounce houses will cost $5 per family to help raise money for the equipment in the park.

The Macomb County Sheriff’s Office will be bringing trained horses from the police horse unit to meet children sometime during the event. The Sheriff’s Office also will bring a K-9 unit for a demonstration.

The Utica Police Department will be coming by for a visit, and a firetruck will be there as well for kids to check out.

Ricketts said the city is hoping to attract both kids and adults to the event for an evening of entertainment.

“We are hoping to have a family community event that will draw people of all ages,” Ricketts said.

The Utica Lions Club will be hosting a pancake breakfast Sunday morning from 8 to 11 a.m. The pancake breakfast will take place in the Beck Pavilion, which is next to the tennis courts.

Faith Terenzi, who is a member of the Utica Lions Club and the City Council, will be at the event helping sell food to attendees.

“As a longtime resident of Utica, I have been attending the art fair since its inception, which at that time was in the library parking lot,” Terenzi said via email.

“I am happy that it is back in Grant Park. Both the vendors and shoppers enjoy it there because of the shade, the nice layout of the park and, of course, the Utica Lions hot dogs and sausage sales, which raises money for Leader Dogs for the Blind,” she said.

Terenzi said her husband will be selling some of his handmade birdhouses at the event.

“I think the bounce house will give kids something to do while the parents are shopping. It’s a win-win situation,” said Terenzi.

Both events have been successful in previous years, and the city expects a large turnout.

For more information on the events, visit, call the City Clerk’s Office at (586) 739-1600 or email city