While some things will change for the Downtown Arts Market this year, the heart of the event won’t, says Mindi Schmitz, executive director of The Arts Center. That's the talent that will be featured, she said.

The Downtown Arts Market returns Thursday, July 9, with entertainment from the Deb Jenkins Band from Fargo. Admission is free.

"it starts off with a bang …,” Schmitz said. “She's great."

The coronavirus pandemic will prompt some changes this summer at the Market: no food and artisan vendors will be present at the events, which will run from 5:30 to 8:30 p.m. Thursdays in the Hansen Arts Park across the street from The Arts Center.

“We encourage attendees to use the local downtown restaurants … they can get stuff to go (from the restaurants) and come to the park,” she said.

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There will also be no art activity.

People should plan to bring their own umbrella for shade if desired along with lawn chairs. The Arts Center provided some umbrellas for use last season but will not be doing that this year.

Schmidt said it’s important for people to be respectful of those who are wearing a face mask at these events.

“We want to practice social distancing,” she said of those attending. “If you’re inclined to wear a mask feel free. … Hopefully, this community won’t do any mask shaming. Because we do know that we have a lot of vulnerable population that comes to the Arts Park for this event. So everybody should be respectful and socially responsible.”

Scheduled to headline the Markets are The Flickertail Band, Bolder Shades of Blue, Jon Wayne, Matt Hodek & The Dakota Dutchmen and the Ryan Keplin Band. Before the headliner, other talent will be featured beginning at 5:30 p.m. such as Top of the Stairs Dance Studio and music by Buffalo City Church. Not all evenings will have a live early performer but those dates that do not have one will still have music before the headliner at 6:30 p.m., Schmitz said.

“You know, we’ve got a lot of local talent here in our community and in North Dakota and we like to highlight those,” Schmitz said of the performers.

Jon Beyer, owner of Jonny B’s Brickhouse, said he’s looking forward to the Market starting again.

“I’m very excited for the return of the Arts Market,” he said. “It has been a wonderful event for downtown Jamestown and actually done wonders for our business as well. We’ve seen a lot of foot traffic come in the restaurant as a result of the downtown Arts Park and we were definitely proud to be sponsors of it last year and look forward to it continuing in the future.”

Beyer will also perform at the Market as part of The Flickertail Band.

“It’s very, very exciting to be able to get out and play music for people again,” Beyer said. “We try to do a style of music that is going to please many groups of people and it’s just - it’s an absolute pleasure to do something for other people to enjoy and experience the Arts Park.”

Schmitz said the musical talent scheduled is varied for audiences.

“It’s everything. It’s jazz, it’s blues, it’s old-time rock and roll,” she said. “It’s polka. It’s rock and roll. Ryan Keplin, he’s a fiddler player. And then we have the Open Mic Night two times this summer so folks can come out and display their talents.”

The Arts Center will be open during the Market for people who want to check out the current art exhibit, renew a membership or become an Arts Center member. In the event of inclement weather, the Market will be canceled, she said. Previously, it would move indoors but that will not occur this season.

“The business community has been so supportive and so has the community in general, because they’re wanting something to do,” Schmitz said.

She said the public has been looking forward to the Market resuming.

“Everybody that I’ve talked to that I said ‘We’re going to start this in July’ they just said ‘Well, thank you, we need something to do and we need some sort of normalcy.’”

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If you go

What: Downtown Arts Market

When: Thursdays, beginning July 9, from 5:30-8:30 p.m.

Where: Hansen Arts Park, downtown Jamestown

Admission: free

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Market Entertainment Schedule

July 9: Deb Jenkins Band

July 16: Bolder Shades of Blue

July 23: The Flickertail Band

July 30: Open Mic Night; Summer Musical 'Recess!'

Aug. 6: Matt Hodek & The Dakota Dutchmen; Buffalo City Church

Aug. 13: Jon Wayne; Top of the Stairs Dance Studio

Aug. 20: The Ryan Keplin Band; Red River Step & Jiggin’ Training

Aug. 27: Open Mic Night; Sugargliders