Whether you're an artist or just an art-lover, the Upper Arlington Labor Day Arts Festival is a premier showcase of a variety of artistic media.

Whether you're an artist or just an art-lover, the Upper Arlington Labor Day Arts Festival is a premier showcase of a variety of artistic media.

Held in scenic Northam Park, the festival offers a day filled with fun and creativity for all ages. The 47th Labor Day Arts Festival is just around the corner, slated for Monday, Sept. 2, from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Admission is free, as always, and there will be plenty of refreshments and entertainment -- not to mention art -- to keep you busy.

Two particular areas to pay attention to would have to be the Emerging Artists booths and last year's Best of Show award-recipients. The Emerging Artists' Program was created to help emerging artists begin their careers as festival artists, specifically by pairing them with established festival artists in a mentoring program.

These artists are housed in booths 160-163 and include jewelry, painting and more.

The Best of Show winners are named around 12:30 p.m., but you can check out last year's winners -- great places to start if you're looking for truly unique and breathtaking pieces. You can see ceramics in booth 53, art created from recycled forest wood in booth 19, mixed media in 51 and jewelry in 52. Just this small sampling of artists shows the diversity of art available at the Labor Day Arts Festival.

The festival also boasts two stages that are full of entertainment: the Arts Activities Area Stage and the UA Performance Stage.

Head to the Arts Activities stage to see juggling and several different types of dance, from ballet to Jewish folk to contemporary and more. The UA Performance stage comes to life at 10 a.m. with the UA High School marching band, followed by a swing band and more.

I've heard from many who have attended the Labor Day Arts Festival how impressed they are by the grass mural. This 75-foot mural is created by our Cultural Arts Division staff and then painted by our talented Streets Division.

This year, all I can tell you is that the mural is designed to be fully interactive -- you'll have to see it for yourself!

Though the festival is the biggest event produced by our Cultural Arts Division, it's not all they do. There are a variety of arts programs available to us in Upper Arlington -- Arts in Community Education, Arts in Community Spaces, the Concourse Gallery, Music in the Parks free summer concerts, among others.

An event of this magnitude is the result of the combined efforts of many groups, organizations and individuals. Besides the year-round work of the Cultural Arts Division and Commission, the festival has many sponsors, such as the Farmers Citizens Bank, Ohio Arts Council, Giant Eagle, Dewey's Pizza, Columbus Alive and more.

As the event nears, additional city divisions become involved, from police and fire handling traffic and safety issues to the parks and forestry, streets and electrical divisions providing the event's logistical needs. Many thanks to all involved.

If you have questions, call Lynette Santoro-Au, our cultural arts manager, at 614-583-5312 (lsantoroau@uaoh.net). And of course, you can visit uaoh.net for full event details and schedules.

Theodore J. Staton is Upper Arlington's city manager.