City Looking for “Pop Up Event” Art Ideas

You may have seen this blurb in the latest Decatur Focus

Next year marks the 25th anniversary of the Decatur Arts Festival. To mark this milestone, we are planning a yearlong arts celebration. The 2010 Strategic Plan calls for expanding public art and a wider variety of art opportunities. Mayor Floyd came up with a great idea for “Sidewalk Saturdays,” featuring an assortment of informal, fun activities throughout the city’s commercial districts. We want to combine this idea with our focus on arts activities and would love your suggestions.

What type of “pop-up events” would you suggest? Are there specific art projects you want to see and would you be interested in working on a committee to implement a community celebration of the arts? Please contact us at [email protected] with your ideas or to volunteer.

Hmmm…sidewalk pottery? Mimes? Stand-up? Caricature drawings? Barbershop quartets?

57 thoughts on “City Looking for “Pop Up Event” Art Ideas”


    1. I just had the same idea. There could be several divisions, from little kids on up through aspiring and professional artists.

    2. +1 Oh, it’s a jolly holiday
      With Mary
      Mary makes your ‘eart so light
      When the day is gray
      And ordinary
      Mary makes the sun shine bright!

      (not to mention “Supercalifragilisticexpialidocious, even though the sound of it……..”)

      We are Mary Poppins fans here. One child almost had a heart attack when Mary came to sit with us at the character event at the Disney Grand Floridian–British accent, umbrella and all.

      1. ‘Appiness is bloomin’ all around her.
        The something-something-something at the dove.
        When Mary ‘olds your ‘and, you feel so grand, your heart starts beatin’ like a big, brass band.
        Oh, it’s a jolly ‘oliday with Mary,
        No wonder that it’s Mary that we love.

        Now that’s an earworm I can live with for a little while. Read all of the books, when I finally got to see the movie (which involved an excursion out of town), it was to be magically transported. One of my most cherished possessions to this day is my Mary Poppins doll. Her felt hat became a bit moth-eaten over the years, but she still has it and her carpetbag and parasol.

        1. The next line surfaced….”The daffodils are smilin’ at the dove…”

          Everything is stuck in this mental attic. Somebody ask me for the lyrics of the “Gilligan’s Island” theme song, go ahead… 😮

          1. Juuuust sit right back and you’ll hear a tale
            A tale of a fateful trip,
            That started at this tropic port,
            Aboard this tiny ship.
            The mate was a mighty sailing man,
            The Skipper brave and sure,
            Five passengers set sail that day,
            For a three hour tour. (A three hour tour …)

            (cue wind sounds and modulate up one half step …)
            The weather started getting rough, the tiny ship was tossed.
            If not for the courage of the fearless crew, the Minnow would be lost.
            (The Minnow would be lost.)

            The ship set ground on the shore of this uncharted desert isle
            With Gilligan (do do do do do); The Skipper too (do do do do do do do).
            The millionaire and his wife,
            The movie star, the professor, and Mary Ann,
            Here on Gilligan’s Isle!!!

                1. No shame. I have a pathological ability to recall (or inability to forget) TV theme lyrics from childhood. All I have on PJ is “Come and ride a little train that is rolling down the track to the Junction…” It’s been haunting me (occasionally) for 40 years. I refuse to Google it because if I get the whole thing going it’ll become the ear worm that eventually drives me to the loony bin.

              1. Come ride the little train that is rollin’ down the tracks to the Junction (Petticoat Junction)
                Forget about your cares it is time to relax at the Junction (Petticoat Junction)
                Lots of curves you bet
                Even more when you get
                To the junction

                There’s a little hotel called the Shady Rest at the Junction (Petticoat Junction)
                It is owned by Kate come and be her guest at the Junction (Petticoat Junction)
                And that’s Uncle Joe
                He’s moving kinda slow
                At the Junction

                Petticoat Junction!

                1. Did you look that up or was it lodged in a crevice of your head? If the latter, I’m impressed and forgive you for giving me the missing pieces which will probably turn it into an inescapable ear worm! 😉

                  1. I’m ashamed to say I wrote that out from memory. And the show that had the line “there’s our lady MD, she’s as pretty as can be” is just an urban legend, despite what you may have heard. It never aired!

                1. I do appreciate your snark art. It serves as a sort of guard rail lest I veer toward taking myself too seriously! I’m just acknowledging it!

                  1. Snark success! And you’ll probably be happy to know that this talk of old tv theme songs has got me whistling the Andy Griffith Show theme non-stop.

                    1. Mary Poppins earworms good. Andy Griffith earworms good. Gilligan’s Island, ok. Petticoat Junction, not as ok. Now I’ve got Green Acres playing in my brain…….not good at all.

        2. I loved the books too. Do you remember the part about the new baby reporting what it was like being born? Always stuck with me and I was disappointed that that scene did not show up in the movie. But I love every inch of the movie too. My kids do not always share my interests, a terrible flaw on their part, but they luckily do share my appreciation for Mary Poppins.

    3. Have you all seen the 3-D sidewalk chalk guy?? (google 3-d chalk drawings)
      We should invite him to do something on the plaza.

    1. Call it whatever pleases you, just come out to see it and then stop for a beer and bite, maybe do a little shopping.

  1. Howzabout a live performance of Decatur Metro’s Friday Free For All? (Or a reading from a selected Best of…). The thing about social media is it’s so, um, virtual (and, therefore, anti-social) amirite?

    1. If mimes are released among us, I reserve the right to douse them with any beverage I may be carrying when I encounter them.

        1. My reflex is actually to slap them, but I’m having a good day on DM and didn’t want to invite chastisement.

  2. “storytellers” on corners presenting short poems — both classic and original — for adults and children — everything from Lewis Carroll and Christina Rossetti to Langston Hughes and Alice Teeter

    1. Brilliant! I need waltz lessons for when I go to Vienna for the Christmas Mozart waltzing party season.

      1. No reason we can’t do each. Why not have a ballroom event on the plaza every quarter? I vote for 2013 being waltz, polka, cha-cha-cha and Hustle!

      2. Yes for a new ballroom dancing on the Plaza tradition! A willing partner will be a problem for me. But hopefully the beer will attract plenty of male partners, at least a few of whom know how to lead.

  3. Interactive community mosaic!

    Could be done with something as simple and fleeting as a wall of post-it-notes… or with a little more investment, individuals could draw/paint/etch glass tiles and then bond/stack them with a clear adhesive… may end up being cool or hideous, but guaranteed to be interesting.

    1. The knee wall in Harmony Park contains bricks decorated by whoever wanted to at the Oakhurst Art & Music Festival one year. They were stored, fired, and incorporated into the wall when the park was renovated the next year. It’s quite cool.

  4. I think we should have a giant performance art piece designed around Whack a Mole. J_T and Token can be moles. I can whack

  5. Not “pop up art” but I’d love to see the traffic signal boxes be painted/decorated by local artists. We’ve seen this in other cities like STL and really loved the “street art”. Alas, I suppose the county owns the boxes, not the city, so maybe easier said than done.

  6. The kids might love an old fashioned day — blacksmiths, wood workers, glass blowers, weavers, etc. Maybe an art piece from each participant could be installed in the city — at the new rec center, the new senior housing facility, a park, etc.

  7. My little dream for this is to run across a musician standing under a street lamp wailing away on a horn, preferably a saxophone.

  8. Street musicians, please, especially Black Sheep Ensemble and the Seed and Feed Marching Abominable.
    Plus, pretty easy to make the “sax under street lamp” scenario come to life but then I’d have to play whack a mole with my SFMA friends who only want to torment me with spoofing the sexy sax man.

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