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First annual White Squirrel Arts Fest coming to downtown Bowling Green in April

Elaine Walker, co-chair of the White Squirrel Arts Fest, announced plans for the festival at the Southern Kentucky Performing Arts Center on Tuesday
Elaine Walker, co-chair of the White Squirrel Arts Fest, announced plans for the festival at the Southern Kentucky Performing Arts Center on Tuesday

Bowling Green will host the first annual White Squirrel Arts Fest this spring in downtown Bowling Green.

The three-day event will kick off Friday, April 21, with a musical performance at The Capital Theater. Other events will include musical and stage performances, slam poetry, author readings, science demonstrations, and artistic exhibits.

Festival co-chair Elaine Walker said the event is dedicated to showing the thriving arts and sciences across the city.

“When people think of Bowling Green and Warren County they think of planes, trains, and automobiles; The Corvette, the hotrods, the Aviation Heritage Park,” Walker said. “But we also have fabulous arts.”

The festival events will take place at locations across downtown with stage performances planned at Southern Kentucky Performing Arts Center; literary readings, local artists' exhibits, and slam poetry at Fountain and Circus Square Parks. Local food trucks, breweries, and vendors will also be on hand over the weekend.

The festival coincides with the SKy Science Festival Expo Day, an event celebrating science, taking place the same weekend at Circus Square Park. Attendees can expect to see science demonstrations including beer brewing techniques.

According to Walker, the goal is to create an annual festival that will bring the community of Bowling Green together and offers something for everyone.

“We’re an umbrella organization, we want to bring together all aspects of arts for a weekend celebration that has something for everyone,” Walker said. “From kids to adults, from science fest’s to poetry slams, there's something for everyone.”

Walker, the former Mayor of Bowling Green, said she is also excited about the potential for growth of the White Squirrel as a destination within the region.

“Our vision for the future is that in five years, 10 years people will recognize that this weekend is when people need to go to Bowling Green and Warren County for the arts,” Walker said.

Fittingly, the festival will also coincide with the reopening of White Squirrel Brewery. The brewery will reopen on State Street on Saturday, April 24.

“It was an easy decision,” Brian Mefford, co-owner of White Squirrel Brewery said. “We just think it's pretty awesome on the week that this launches, that on Saturday we’re going to be blowing the door off our new space.”

The festival is sponsored by the Kentucky Tourism, Arts, and Heritage Cabinet.

The festival will be open to all ages and any artists or organizations interested in participating in the event are encouraged to apply at The White Squirrel website.

Jacob Martin is a Reporter at WKU Public Radio. He joined the newsroom from Kansas City, where he covered the city’s underserved communities and general assignments at NPR member station, KCUR. A Louisville native, he spent seven years living in Brooklyn, New York before moving back to Kentucky. Email him at