ARCATA – The Creamery Festival, presented by the Arcata Playhouse, returns to Arcata’s historic Creamery District Thursday, Aug. 15 through Sunday, Aug. 18 with four days of events for the whole family. There’s always something for everyone at the Creamery Festival – here’s just a sampling of what’s in store this year:
Festivities open on Thursday, Aug. 15 at 7 p.m. with the first of six performances from Mendocino County’s own Flynn Creek Circus. Returning to Humboldt County for a fourth year, the popular nostalgic yet always fresh animal-free circus brings gasp-inducing top-quality acts to the Creamery district’s vintage big top tent. Be amazed by tightrope walkers, aerialists, jugglers, acrobats, and comedians in this year’s all-new Out of Hat show. More details and tickets are available from their website at flynncreekcircus.com.
Friday, Aug. 16 from 6 to 9 p.m., the Creamery District will be abuzz with Third Friday fun, highlighting local artisans, cider, food, and music in a family-friendly market atmosphere. Music from the four-piece group, Frogbite will grace the Creamery Courtyard. Hopping from the depths of a murky pond on the side of a high hill in the heart of Humboldt County, Frogbite’s style varies from funky-jazzy to rock with a little retro thrown in for good measure.
On Saturday, Aug 17, the Creamery Courtyard will host music from 3 to 7 p.m. Come browse the artisan shops and listen to tunes from Oyster Baes, Blood Hunny, and Sue and the Namis and then get ready for Elemental.
Saturday, Aug. 17 sees the return of the Playhouse’s signature outdoor performance spectacle Elemental, complete with giant puppets, dancers, stilt walkers, live music, and community-created paper lanterns. This free family-friendly event takes place all around the Creamery Building and features the Playhouse’s own Elemental Pageantry workshop students, Fairies from Redwood Raks, as well as professional performance artists from around Humboldt County. Meet at the Big top at 7:30 p.m. The procession begins at 8 pm.
This year we are offering the people a chance to pre-order balloon lanterns, to raise money for the free festival and for participants to take a little bit of Elemental home with them.
The festivities conclude on Sunday, Aug. 18 at 2 p.m. with a final performance from the Flynn Creek Circus.
More details on these and other events are at creamerydistrict.org.
Carried forward from previous years is local artist Lush Newton’s specially-commissioned outdoor art exhibit “California State Creamery; The Land of Milk and Honey.” Inspired by the 100th anniversary of the Creamery Building, the artwork showcases Newton’s unique, whimsical style in multiple oversized art pieces placed around the building, including representations of a historical train and train station, a family of Portuguese farmers, and a special ode to Creamery Building architect Franklin Georgeson.
Also continuing this year is Tim Gray’s Footfall, an audio installation created to accompany a stroll around the Creamery District. While Gray’s health prevents him from participating live in this year’s event, his perspective on the Creamery District has not changed: “The world is quite a noise-filled place, so much so that most of us screen out much of this sound.
This piece is designed to envelop the listener in another aural world, an alternative universe in sound.” Footfall can be found at creameryfestival.org/foot-fall.
Arcata Playhouse/Playhouse Arts is located at 1251 Ninth St. in Arcata.