Event Details

Saturday, June 16th, 2018
|  12:00pm - 8:00pm

KeyBank Summer Solstice Celebration

saturday, June 16


8th annual Fairy House competition (12pm-4pm)

Explore a collection of fairy houses created by both professional and non-professional artists of all ages, community groups, schools, families and individuals. Prizes are awarded to the top three houses.  This year, Lewiston Dance will present the awards at 4pm. 

Bring your own, build or discover small 'fairy dwellings' throughout the Artpark Amphitheater. Participate in craft making, potion making, face paint and more. 

To participate with your own fairy house or to purchase a Fairy House Starter Kit, see below for more information.

Photo by Pavel Antonov


william close & the earth harp collective (7pm)

The Solstice Celebration culminates with a performance by William Close & Earth Harp Collective at 7pm. The finale performance features a collaboration with choreographer Jon Lehrer in a large-scale inclusive dance by professional performers, Lewiston Dance and all festival visitors!

Close and his group thrilled audiences at Artpark’s 2017 “Big Bang” season finale. This year his 24-36 string Earth Harp will soar above the audience gathered on and around the “painted parking lot,” 2017’s re-creation of Gene Davis’ “Niagara 1979.” William Close is a world-renowned installation artist who has performed at Coachella, Burning Man and NBC’s “America’s Got Talent.”

Click here for an interview with William Close from his appearance at Artpark's Big Bang in 2017 




All day activities (Beginning at 2pm)

Enter the immersive world of the KeyBank Summer Solstice Celebration, created by choreographer Jon Lehrer, stage director Kate LoConti and designer Jessica Wegrzyn.


Enjoy the park, celebrate the sun and the world we have created with the following ongoing activities for young and old (see below for details and times):



Fairy house competition 12pm-4pm- Artpark’s 8th annual display of fairy houses created by artists, families, groups, and individuals. Prizes awarded to the top three houses at 4pm.


Craft and potion making 12pm-5pm - Enjoy a creative collection of craft making stations including potion making, face paint, t-shirt silk screening, DIY crowns and more!

Yoga by Brian Ball of Niagara Yoga Co-op - Start your Summer Solstice day with Yoga. 11:30am-12:15pm in front of Artpark Mainstage Theater. Bring your yoga mat.



Fairies in 4D by Uta Bekaia 2:00pm-7:00pm

Interact with whimsical fairies who come alive as unique wearable sculptures created by Uta Bekaia. Born in the Caucusus’ Georgia and now based in Bushwick Brooklyn, Uta’s background in fashion, sewing, embroidering and other crafts moves him to create unique work in mix mediums. In his work, Uta creates multimedia performances and installations inhabited by wearable sculptures exhibited and performed in New York, Toronto, Argentina, England, France, Germany and more.  

Roaming Performers:

Forest Nymphs by Jon Lehrer: 2:00pm - 7:00pm
Bloomsday Buffalo: 4:15pm – 6:15pm
Poet: 4:15pm – 6:15pm





Lewiston Dance – Performing throughout the afternoon on the Key Stage from 2:30pm-3:30pm. Lewiston Dance will also be presenting the awards for the Fairy House Competition at 4pm.



The Art of Picnic by Chef Krista Van Wagner 2:00pm / 3:30pm / 5:00pm- Join master chef, Krista Van Wagner for Captain Hook's Caribbean Adventure interactive cooking demonstrations and communal lunch.. Delicious pre-packed picnic baskets are available for purchase all day! Interactive crepes for kids: flip and make a nutella fairy dusted crepe! Neverland Island lunch: Jerkalicious pork sliders served with mango chutney, jerkonaise and Tinkerbell Caribbean slaw, plantain chips and a fruit fairy wand.

After spending 2 years in the Caribbean preparing Jamaican Jerk Chicken, Chef Krista returned to Curly’s, her restaurant in Lackawanna, to prepare Caribbean delights. Krista’s Jerkalicious and Hellacious hot sauces are now available to everyone.




Enjoy food vendors 12:00pm-7:00pm – Feast on an eclectic offering of culinary delights by Ms. Judi's Food Truck, The Great Foodini, The Nut Hut, GPops and Billy's Beef.



Bloomsday Buffalo 4:15pm-6:15pm  

Join hundreds of cities around the world for Bloomsday, an annual celebration of the life and work of one of Ireland's most famous authors, James Joyce.

Everyone is invited to follow a day in the life of Leopold Bloom and his fellow Dubliners, on the anniversary of their adventures in 1904.  Fans from in and around the Buffalo-Niagara-Southern Ontario region will gather at Artpark from 4:00pm to 7:00pm for this celebration, a fun-filled evening of performances, readings, music, flash mobs and sing-a-longs. The festivities will include music by Mary Ramsey (of 10,000 Maniacs), Kindred, Tom Callahan, along with Buffalo favorite Kelly Meg Brennan who will sing well known songs from the novel. More on Bloomsday Buffalo


All photos by Pavel Antonov





$10 ticket* - includes all Festival activities from Noon-8pm  

Parking included with ticket; Re-entry permitted, No outside food or beverage

*Children 3 and under free admission 

Purchase tickets here


Tickets can also be purchased by phone at 1-888-223-6000, in person at the Artpark Box Office (Mon-Sat 10am-4pm) and at the entrance to the Festival.


**Please note CENTER STREET CLOSURE for the weekend of June 16-17. It is recommended that patrons use the Portage Road entrance to Artpark and park in Lot B (closest to the Festival activities in the Amphitheater). Otherwise, please follow detour signs to our 4th Street entrance. 


Fairy House Registration

Artpark is inviting schools, organizations, families, groups and artists to create fairy houses for the Fairy House Competition. Prizes will be given to the top 3 houses, selected by Artpark. One grand prize of a $300 Artpark Gift Certificate, one second place prize of a $200 Artpark Gift Certificate, and one third place prize of a $100 Artpark Gift Certificate will be awarded at the Festival.

Registration deadline is June 13
Click here to register for the Fairy House Competition 

Artpark Fairy House Starter Kits on sale now!

$15 per kit, inlcudes A miniature fairy, glitter glue, heart, moss, colored wood, mini clothespins, shells, stones, feathers, flowers, and fairy dust. To purchase and arrange pickup for your Fairy Starter Kit, please call Nancy Osborne at 716-754-9000 ext 141.

festival sponsors

Presenting Sponsor


The Rupp Foundation



Fairy House Competition Sponsor


creative team bios

Kate LoConti (Creative Director) Kate LoConti is a Buffalo-based actress, director, and theatre educator.  She has performed in Chicago, NYC, London, Venezuela, and Spain, and is now the Theatre Arts Program Coordinator at Niagara County Community College, where she directs and teaches full-time.  Ms. LoConti holds a BFA from SUNY Buffalo, an MFA from Columbia University, and is a proud member of Actors' Equity.  She is the recipient of the Bob Hope Fellowship (Columbia University), the Katharine Cornell Award (Irish Classical Theatre Company), and the ARTIE Award for Outstanding Actress in a Play (Irish Classical Theatre Company).


Jon Lehrer (Creative Director) Jon Lehrer, who was raised in Queens, New York, took his very first dance class at age 19 at the University at Buffalo, ultimately receiving his B.F.A in Dance. As a professional, Jon has danced with the Erick Hawkins Dance Company, Paul Sanasardo, John Passafiume Dancers, in Merv Griffin's "Funderful" and the Radio City Rockettes Christmas Spectacular. In 1997, Jon was hired by Giordano Dance Chicago and stayed with them for 10 years, eventually becoming Associate Director and Resident Choreographer. Since moving to Buffalo in 2007, Jon’s company and choreography have been seen all over the world, receiving rave reviews and critical acclaim. Here in Buffalo, Jon and company have been committed to producing original works through collaboration and partnership with the areas finest cultural organizations including the Artpark, Buffalo Philharmonic Orchestra, Burchfield Penney Art Center, Albright-Knox Art Gallery, Irish Classical Theatre Company, MusicalFare Theatre, Torn Space Theater, Buffalo Chamber Players, UB Center of the Arts, UB Department of Theatre and Dance, and many more.


Jessica Wegrzyn (Costume and Set Designer) Jessica has been a member of the Buffalo theater community for nearly a decade and has been the resident costume designer for Torn Space Theater since 2012. She has also designed for Buffalo-area companies such as Irish Classical Theatre Company, Second Generation Theatre, The Kavinoky Theatre and LehrerDance. A theater artist who's appreciation began in performance found a fascination with and obsession for uncovering the details which led her to design.