Tucked just south of Boyne City’s S. Lake Street is a gem of a spot – and a fest – the locals have christened “SOBO.” Tourists and locals alike are drawn to the quaint area, known for its arts, shopping, dining, and entertainment shops.
To celebrate SOBO’s unique character, five years ago the town launched its annual SOBO Arts Festival.
Held at the end of June, the festival features a juried art fair, music, dance, theater, healing arts, jugglers, mimes, children’s art projects and games.
The festival’s growth has been slow and sure by design, balancing a sophisticated artsy feel with Boyne City’s small town image.
“We love that the SOBO Arts Festival celebrates the arts, while also supporting our local businesses,” said Shannon Pearce, this year’s festival chair. “Boyne City is one of a kind.”
Last year, the fest was moved to Peninsula Beach Park, both as an upgrade to accommodate the growing attendance, and extend the SOBO district itself.
It was the perfect opportunity to spice up the yearly theme, which is “SOBO by the Shore,” Pearce said.
This year, festival organizers have added more booths and are building on the culinary arts vis a vis one mighty trend: food trucks.
In the truck mix are Happy’s Tacos, Etta’s, Kate’s Cupcakes, Rolling Scones, Brian’s Ice Cream Experience, Pigs Eatin’ Ribs, and the Boyne City Lions Club.
“Great food will be available throughout the day so you can show up for lunch, and stay for dinner,” Pearce said.
The festival will kick off on June 27, in conjunction with Boyne’s popular Stroll the Streets event, when the Bay Area Big Band plays on South Lake.
There will also be SpinArt demonstrations, SOBO’s “Mural Mania,” sidewalk chalk artwork, and an opportunity to make empty bowls for the Manna Project.
By Saturday, the “art” portion of the fest will really be in full swing, with the artists displaying their work, and ongoing musical performances, giveaways, magicians, and an interactive art experience in cooperation with the Boyne Library’s Summer Reading Program.
With a fest so well organized and jam-packed full of fun, what more could Pearce hope for as the 2014 SOBO Arts Festival begins?
“I pray that the weather cooperates!” she said.
The 2014 5th Annual SOBO Arts Festival will take place in downtown Boyne City June 27-28. For more, visit soboartsfestival.com.