It's the beginning of summer which can only mean one thing - parties. Lots and lots of parties. And this Saturday, ART 321 is putting the 'Art' in Party with their 'Art of the Party' festival in downtown Casper.

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Beginning at 11 a.m., ART 321 is hosting a one-day arts festival featuring live music, paint splatters, food, dancing, a night market, and so much more.

"Really, what Art of the Party is, is ART 321's annual fundraiser," said ART 321 Executive Director Tyler Cessor. "Folks can come to kind of an event-based fundraiser and see the work that we do throughout the year. They can come and participate in the events, the activities, and check out some music. And in doing so, they're supporting the ongoing that ART 321 is doing."

One of the big aspects of Art of the Party is its partnership with the Funk Junk District to provide a night market to attendees.

"The real focus I think this year was the night art market," Cessor said. "We just have this really cool outdoor market, under these big tents. WE have 48 different vendors. And it's just a way to support artists in Wyoming that are making some amazing things. And then, indirectly, you're also support ART 321 so that we can keep nurturing and educating Wyoming's artists, increasing access to meaningful and healthy arts experiences for all."

Being able to partner with another local organization like Funky Junk just shows how much the community of Casper wants to grow; how much it wants to add even more culture and diversity for artists and for audiences.

"Funk Junk has long had a very successful artisan market," Cessor said. "And one of the things that ART 321 tries to do is, we try to connect artists with meaningful opportunities in the community, outside of our four walls. We're always trying to find ways to connect artists with more ways to support their work. And with Funk Junk, we thought it was a great way for our artists to come to our market and get to know Funk Junk and ask about ways they can get involved in the market. And we wanted to highlight the work that they're doing year-round."

The night market is just one of the events happening at Art of the Party, though. Besides that, there will also be a 'Creator Corner,' for people to make their own pieces of art.; from splatter painting, tie-dye, design-a-doll, spin art, a pendulum pour, and more. There's an opportunity to have a paint battle with paint balls and squirt guns. Miranda Bressler will be spinning fire at 6:00 p.m. and 9:00 p.m. And there will also be salsa dance lessons, in preparation of a John Roberts y Pan Blanco concert taking place later Saturday night. There will even be a silent disco happening at 10:00 p.m.

"We'll have some salsa lessons at 4:00 p.m. to get people ready for the 7:00 p.m. concert time, and John Roberts goes on at 8:00 p.m.," Cessor revealed. "After that, when the sound ordinance goes into effect, it doesn't mean that the party has to be over. We're switching over to a silent disco where everyone can come download the app and they can bring their own headphones or we'll have headphones here, and we'll have a silent street dance."

It's going to be a day filled with song and dance and, most importantly, art. Artists and art fans alike will gather for fellowship as the summer season officially kicks off.

Tickets are $25 per person, and kids 12 and under get in free with a paying adult. All proceeds directly benefit both ART 321 and the artists that it features.

"The funds raised through ticket sales go to benefit ART 321," Cessor said. "We're also going to have a sponsor wall that looks at the different programs we offer at ART 321 and people can fill out a little card and pledge donations, to make those programs happen and keep our doors open. Because that's how non-profits function; by the generosity of our community members.

Funky Junk is not the only downtown Casper business partnering with ART 321. The Gaslight Social and The Office Bar and Grill are also sponsoring the event.

"The Gaslight Social is our title sponsor and they're covering the tents for the night art market," Cessor said. "They're covering the stage and the lighting and the sound, too. They're amazing partners and we are so fortunate to have them partnering with us. And The Office Bar and Grill, our other neighbors, are sponsoring the bands and the salsa lessons. We're very fortunate to have the support to do the work that we're trying to do."

It's a testament to the city of Casper that so many local businesses partner together to create these types of events. It just goes to show how much these businesses value community, togetherness and, of course, art.

The party will be out in full swing on Saturday, June 4 from 11:00 a.m. to 11:30 p.m. Tickets can be purchased at this website or you can visit the ART 321 Facebook page. 

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ART 321 Immersive Installation Exhibit

ART 321 recently hosted an 'Immersive Installation Exhibit' that explores the many different facets of the human experience. The pieces focus on mental health, physical health, life, death, hurt, and hope. 

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