Four local outdoor festivals planned for this year | News, Sports, Jobs
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Four local outdoor festivals planned for this year | News, Sports, Jobs

People gather at the Harrietstown Town Hall for the 2023 Adirondack Plein Air Festival Show and Sale in Saranac Lake. (Photo provided)

SARANAC LAKE — Four outdoor events are planned throughout the region this summer.

Organizers encourage visitors to check the schedule and plan to explore the Adirondack Mountains through the eyes of painters from across the country.

In 2024, the following activities are planned for the northern Adirondacks:

July 16-20: Keeseville Plein Air, part of the Community Arts Festival

¯ August 12-17: Adirondack Plein Air Festival, Saranac Lake

September 18-21: Salmon River Valley Plein Air Festival, Malone

¯ October 1-6: Tupper Lake Plein Air Festival, Tupper Lake

Plein Air is a French term meaning “painting in the open air.” Artists participating in these festivals will take their paints and easels outdoors and explore natural light and scenic views, wilderness or farmland, industrial or rural locations, offering an unlimited number of subjects. Artists can paint several paintings per day, resulting in a group exhibition consisting of hundreds of paintings. Large, small, oils, watercolors, acrylics, pastels, a full range of subjects.

For centuries, painters have been immortalizing this area in the open air.

In 2009, Saranac Lake painter and one of the founders of Saranac Lake ArtWorks, Sandra Hildreth, decided to create an outdoor festival for the Adirondacks. The Adirondack Plein Air Festival began with a few local artists painting for two days and then exhibiting their work on Sunday afternoon. Now in its 16th year, the event has a national reputation, a juried selection process, five days of painting and more than $5,000 in prizes. The event culminates in a massive exhibition and sale at the Harrietstown Town Hall in Saranac Lake, which regularly sends dozens of paintings to new homes.

The Keeseville, Malone and Tupper Lake festivals are modeled on the Saranac Lake event and attract artists who want to paint the Adirondack landscapes, from the High Peaks to the foothills, from Lake Champlain to the AuSable River Valley.

These events are designed for artists, many of whom travel the country to participate in festivals, as well as art collectors and viewers. Spectators are welcome at all outdoor festivals. Learn more at

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