To help visitors enjoy Bellevue’s annual arts weekend, the city and partners will provide free shuttles to the three big art fairs downtown. The shuttles will minimize the disruption caused by street closures for the Bellevue Arts Museum ArtsFair, the Sixth Street Fair and the Festival of Arts.
The festivities span three days, July 27-29. On Saturday, July 28, and Sunday, July 29, Metro buses every 15 minutes will take people to and from the festivals and park-and-ride lots in South Bellevue and Kirkland. Last year, there were more than 4,600 boardings from the lots.
This year is the 61st edition of the Bellevue Arts Museum ArtsFair, formerly called the Bellevue Arts and Crafts Fair, and it’s being presented by Coldwell Banker Bain. In 2006, approximately 340,000 people attended the fair, and total sales by artists were estimated at more than $2 million.
ArtsFair will again be at Bellevue Square, on Bellevue Way Northeast between Northeast Eighth and Northeast Fourth streets, and will feature the works of 325 artists. Kidsfair, presented by the Seattle Times, will be at the Bellevue Arts Museum, 510 Bellevue Way NE.
Nearby, at Northeast Sixth Street and 106th Avenue Northeast, is the Sixth Street Fair, an open-air display of sculpture, jewelry, home décor, wood and glass work, fabrics and more. Presented by Bank of America, the fair features more than 120 artists, a variety of foods for sale, as well as live music that includes jazz, R&B and pop.
Just north of Bellevue Square, the Festival of Arts will offer jewelry, photography, textiles, glass, fine art, woodworking, sculpture, ceramics and pottery. Now in its 23rd year, the Festival is produced by the Craft Cooperative of the Northwest. The Festival of Arts will be at the Cost Plus World Market parking lot at 10300 NE Eighth St.
The free shuttle service, offered by the city, the Bellevue Downtown Association, the Bellevue Arts Museum and the Bellevue Festival of the Arts, will run Saturday, 10 a.m. to 9 p.m., and Sunday, 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. Riders can catch buses to and from downtown and any of three Metro Transit Park & Ride locations:
- South Bellevue (Bellevue Way Southeast and 112th Avenue Southeast)
- South Kirkland (108th Avenue Northeast and Northeast 38th Place)
- Houghton (Interstate 405 and Northeast 70th Place)
Due to the influx of visitors, several downtown streets will be closed through much of the weekend. To allow for event preparations, southbound 100th Avenue Northeast, between Eighth and 10th streets, will be closed on Thursday, 7 a.m. to 10 p.m. Also closed on Thursday, 5 p.m. to 10 p.m., will be westbound Northeast Second Street, between 108th and 110th avenues, and westbound Northeast 10th Street, between 106th and 108th avenues.
From Thursday evening, 6 p.m., to Sunday at 10 p.m., 106th Avenue Northeast, between Fourth and Eighth streets, and Northeast Sixth Street, between Bellevue Way and 106th Avenue, will be closed. Also, 102nd Avenue Northeast, between Eighth and 10th streets, will be closed from 7 a.m. Friday to 10 p.m., Sunday.
For those who choose to drive to the fairs, the Bellevue Downtown Association will provide free parking Saturday and Sunday at Plaza Center, 10900 NE Eighth St., and $1 parking at Griffin Parking Lot, 10801 NE Eighth.
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