Sarasota Chalk Festival celebrates 'Circus City'

November 1, 2012 

The Sarasota Chalk Festival celebrates the city's most famous live entertainment export this year with the theme "Circus City: USA." Hundreds of artists from around the world will perform on the streets in historic Burns Square in downtown Sarasota.

The festival will feature two music stages as well as a performance stage showcasing music, drama, dance, and acrobatic and aerial performances.

The main festivities start today and run through Monday with everything free and open to the public including a walk this afternoon by daredevil Nik Wallenda. The world-famous Sarasotan will test the high-wire line created by artists Anthony Capetto, Wendy Stum and Shawn McCann. The public is welcome to make the crossing, too, and will be supported by the Chalk Festival volunteers who will have been trained in advance by Wallenda.

Organizers are expecting more than 200,000 people in attendance as it enters its fifth season.

"The festival is as raw as it gets to feeling and seeing an outdoor museum in motion," says Artistic Director and Event Chair Denise Kowal on the festivals' website.

"Fine artists take to their hands and knees for days, recreating old master paintings, original works of art and 3D compositions right before our eyes."

Details: 8 a.m. to 10 p.m. Nov. 1-5, 200-500 S. Pineapple Ave., Sarasota. Admission: Free. Information:

--Wade Tatangelo

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