Weather Forecast


'Art is in the Air' gets big lift

Hot air balloons will launch the second Plein Air Art Festival, which will run today through 29 in Red Wing.

"Art is in the Air," a Red Wing Arts Association event, brings artists to town to paint outdoors and create works reflecting that setting. They will be working throughout the community, plus there will be special events involving the public.

Hot air balloon launches are planned for the first time this year. They will take place at Red Wing Airport, across the river in Bay City. Admission is free; people are encouraged to bring lawn chairs and blankets.

A flight is planned at at 5:30 p.m. today.

Weather conditions are critical; balloons will not fly if it's too windy. However, Arts Director Dan Guida said, if scheduled flights are canceled, an attempt will be made the morning of June 22.

Officials cannot predict in advance which way the balloons will travel. They go where the air flows. All the pilot can do is raise and lower the balloon to catch air going the direction he'd like to travel.

At least 16 balloons are expected, including two owned by area residents.

Artists will paint "en plein air" throughout the week.

• June 22 -- Painting demonstrations at the Depot Gallery, 418 Levee St.; outdoor musicians

• June 23 -- A special session is scheduled for kids from 1 to 4 p.m. at Depot Gallery and Levee Park. Open to preschoolers through fifth-graders, Plein Air for Kids provides the instruction and materials. Children must be accompanied by an adult. Call (651) 388-7569 to register.

• June 24 -- Art on the Mississippi: artists of all mediums can take a slow cruise on the river

• June 25 -- View from the Bluffs: artists will paint scenic overlooks of the Mississippi River Valley

• June 26 -- Paint the Town: artists will be working in the downtown area

• June 27 -- Demonstrations at 10 a.m. at gallery; Paint Out from noon to 4 p.m.

• June 28 -- Breakfast for artists and Music in the Air with street musicians

• June 29 -- Coffee at the Depot 8 to 10 a.m.; Plein Air show and sale opens at 1 p.m.; artist reception 3 to 6 p.m., with introductions at 4 p.m. Cash awards will be presented for People's Choice painting, Paint Out winner and Best of Show.

For more information, go to People also may call Kathy Silverthorn at the VCB, (651) 385-5934 or (800) 498-3444, or Guida at the Red Wing Arts Association, (651) 388-7569, if they want to participate in painting activities.