Bend Summer Festival

July 12 kicks off a celebration of summer with numerous artisans and live music in downtown Bend. Friday headliner is Todd Haaby preceded by Quetzal Guerrero, Yogoman Burning Band and Jelly Bread. Saturday music includes Ozomatli, Yogoman Burning Band, World’s Finest, Giraffe Dodgers, Jeff Crosby and the Refugees and Polyrhythmics.


A 23-year old Central Oregon tradition and community art gathering, Bank of the Cascades Bend Summer Festival, begins July 12 at 5pm and continues Saturday, July 13 from 11am to 11pm and Sunday, July 14 from 11am to 5pm. The festival is a celebration of the arrival of summer located in historic downtown Bend. More than 60,000 attendees enjoy a weekend of events that spans more than eight complete blocks. Its three admission-free days of adventure as attendees meander through the streets of downtown Bend exploring booths, dancing to live music, enjoying libations and sampling treats.  


The festival includes more than 125 artisans/crafters this year from Oregon, Washington, Idaho, Utah, Arizona, California, Texas and British Columbia. Mediums represented include painting, jewelry, photography, ceramics, glass, fiber, metal, wood, collage, sculpture and new this year, botanical art.


The Bend Summer Festival will also host the Tillandsia Terrariums art workshop with Sarah VanAmburg on July 14 at 1pm at Sarah’s booth on the corner of Minnesota Avenue and Wall Street. This workshop is available to the first 30 people who register with Sarah at and is appropriate for all ages. Children will love creating their own terrarium, and the Tillandsia air plant is very easy to care for.  Cost for this workshop is $15 per person.

Bend of Jury Award

bendgreathornedowlThe Best of Jury Award this year goes to photographer Dan Elster, a self-taught photographer who pursued his dream of a career in wildlife photography eight years ago after quitting his job in Chicago and hitting the road with his wife. Today, they have a family and are settled in Phoenix, Oregon. His subjects are 100 percent wild (no captive or “staged” shots) and that is a significant point of distinction for him. Capturing behavior and the inclusion of the habitat defines his style. Bend Great Horned Owl sets him apart as a stunning observer of wildlife as well as a skilled technical artist whose composition takes your breath away.  
Elster is the recipient of the $500 Best of Jury cash award.


John HillmerjohnHillmer

This year’s Bank of the Cascades Bend Summer Festival fine art comes from soulful local painter John Hillmer who is influenced from his travels all over the world, and his life here in Bend, where he still resides part of the year.  C3 Events started collaborating with John Hillmer 20 years ago to artistically brand its celebration of community through its events. The image contains ceramics, an upright acoustic bass, a horn, foliage, the sun representing Summer, the moon representing Central Oregon beautiful skies, a fish which metaphorically showcases the outdoor lifestyle in Bend and modern, brilliant colors.

Hillmer’s award-winning art and design work gets around. His large acrylic stage murals have made appearances with artists such as Ray Charles, Keb Mo and Maya Angelou. His posters and designs have been used to promote more than 50 music, literary and community events across North America. He earned his masters degree in International Education while working as both teacher and publications director at the American School Foundation of Guadalajara. His artwork reflects his own experiences living, traveling and teaching in Mexico and in his own colorful observations about life’s vast interconnections.

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