We only had to stroll a couple of blocks to find the fun Wednesday night, because, this time, the cool street festival came to us.
Bazaar After Dark, Appleton’s first night market, brought a hip vibe and a whole lot of people to Wisconsin Avenue and we can’t thank the organizers, sponsors and participants enough.
The whole event began and ended with love. That’s not just sentiment, that’s street art. Bazaar After Dark, and in particular, artist Irineo Medina, gifted the neighborhood with a beautiful mural painted in real time throughout the festival.
Medina prepped the wall on Tuesday then worked through the night on Wednesday to complete the project. Meanwhile, all around him, swirled the quirky BAD-ness.
Fire throwers worked their magic just outside the meditation tent. A craft brew stand drew a long but swift moving line. Food trucks and restaurant stands offered a wide variety high-end street food including tailgate soup, pizza, german chocolate cheesecake, and hazelnut gelato. In the interest of thorough blogging, I tasted all four.
Re-purposed poles hung with gorgeous Edison light bulbs crisscrossed above, a life-sized checker board appeared below, and rustic tables decorated with flowered centerpieces offered seating and ambiance down the middle of the street. A sweet chalkboard asking people “What is your dream for Wisconsin Avenue?” anchored the east end. All of these came courtesy of Urban Evolutions, who instinctively make everything they touch infinitely cooler.
A Mile of Music inspired band stand on the west end hosted J-Council, GGOOLLDD, Lex Allen, Cory Chisel and Adriel Denae.
Best of all, among all the visitors to Wisconsin Avenue, mingled the delighted residents and permanent vendors.
“Isn’t this great?” asked a very busy Dawn Ebert, co-owner of neighborhood stalwart Simple Simon Bakery.
“So great!” I said as I snapped her picture. I meant to take lots of really great pictures, but I kept running into people who were just as excited as I was by the event, and we lingered to chat.
Still, here are a few that hardly seem to capture the evening’s magic.
Thank you to Pulse and all of the festival sponsors. You lit up our neighborhood with joy.
Y’all come back now, ya here?