ArtsFest Outside: Your guide to enjoying art in the great outdoors

ArtsFest is coming up October 19th to 22nd , and there are plenty of outdoor options designed to appeal to nature lovers, families with small children — or anybody avoiding indoor spaces — all weekend long.


Thursday through Sunday enjoy self-guided tours of public art, starting with the New Rochelle Walk of Fame (located in the heart of downtown at Ruby Dee Park) , installed in 2011 as a tribute to some of New Rochelle’s most notable residents throughout the city’s 325-year history. The signs, located along the park’s outer pathway, present a micro history of America with figures representing the arts, business, politics, education, the media, entertainment and sports.

You can also take a tour of New Rochelle’s NRNY Murals, 20 large scale works that make a statement about New Rochelle as a diverse city where art plays a pivotal role. Completed in 2022 the high impact murals were created by a group of world class street artists curated by Street Art for Mankind and sponsored by the New Rochelle Council on the Arts and the City of New Rochelle’s IDA.  Download the map at

Or get in the Halloween spirit by taking in Halloween storefront window paintings created by students in New Rochelle High School ‘s prestigious PAVE arts program. They can be viewed at locations all over the city (for a list of Halloween Windows and their store locations go  to to )

There is also a new gallery space that is literally on the street at The Illustrator (600 North Avenue), an apartment complex with four climate-controlled art displays that can be viewed any time. For ArtsFest the exhibit, curated by Key to the Castle Workshops, features works by photographers Nick Carter and Katie O’Neil and artists Marie Hines Cowan and William Papaleo. Works can be seen through January 15, 2024.


Making its debut on Friday night is a new “haunted house” attraction at Hudson Park, Dr. Wildcliff’s Haunted Greenhouse and Mansion (42 Wildcliff Drive). The Hudson Park Children’s Greenhouse has come up with an appropriate back story: From 6 to 9 pm immerse yourself in the chilling tale of Dr. Wildcliff, a demented botanist whose bizarre experiments resulted in a vegetation takeover. Navigate through a haunted greenhouse, a spooky mansion, and a disorienting corn maze, all while enjoying local hot chocolate and signature pumpkin donuts. Time slots are tailored to different age groups, ensuring fun for all. Buy tickets in advance at


Begin the day with Yoga for Creative People, a free yoga class guided by Angela Derecas Taylor from 9 am to 9:45 on the lawn at City Hall (515 North Avenue). Bring your yoga mat for 45 minutes of gentle yoga focused on the chakras of creativity. Appropriate for all ages over 16 years.

The yoga session will be followed by an “En Plein Air” painting workshop with artist William Papaleo from 10 am to 12:30 pm. Visual artists  can set up their easels on the front lawn of City Hall (location will move to the Rotunda Gallery inside City Hall in case of rain): Bring your own materials (paints and  canvas, or pastels, charcoal, pencils and sketch pads.) Both the yoga and the painting workshop are presented by Key to the Castle ( )

If classic cars are your jam don’t miss the ArtsFest Classic Car Show (Hamilton Avenue Parking Lot, North Ave. at Hamilton, adjacent to City Hall) from 11am to 4:30 pm. Walk through the parking lot to view eye-catching classic auto beauties on exhibit by invitation only and enjoy rollicking live music by the Bear Mountain Brass Band from 12 to 2 pm. This show is dedicated to the memory of Joe Ricci. Rain Date: Sunday, October 22nd .

From 11 am to 5 pm the Fifth Annual Artsfest Artisan Market (on the grounds of Thomas Paine Cottage, 20 Sicard Avenue) will offer over 25 makers selling their creations, along with live music, food trucks and a visit from the ArtsWestchester ArtsMobile, a colorful van custom fit with all kinds of art supplies that will offer free visual arts workshops led by professional teaching artists from 12 pm to 3 pm.

On the other end of town at Hudson Park a Pumpkin Patch at the Hudson Park Children’s Greenhouse from 11 am to 2 pm offers whimsical fall fun. Children can paint pumpkins, navigate a corn maze, and join the scavenger hunt for hidden bones in the greenhouse to construct a skeleton! $10 participation fee is required for these activities (get tickets at but all attendees will be gifted with a goody bag. (54 Wildcliff Rd, Hudson Park, NR).

At 11:30 am take a coffee break at Starbucks Wykagyl (1278 North Avenue) and enjoy a spoken word event, A Vente on the Veranda. New Rochelle High School’s PAVE 4 and TheatreWorks students will share a collection of monologues and performance pieces, developed and arranged by students, staged outside to demonstrate that you don’t need a theatre to create great art. (You might never think of your Pumpkin Spice Latte the same way again!)

Downtown at the New Rochelle Public Library, the New Rochelle Artist Association has organized a rock painting workshop, NRAA ROCKS! on the Library Patio, adjacent to Ruby Dee Park: From 12 noon to 3 pm participants will paint rocks with artists from the NRAA.

Nearby at Anderson Plaza the ArtsFest Music Festival takes place from 12 noon to 5 pm, with local bands performing 45-minute sets on the hour. Grab a seat on the plaza and listen to an afternoon of free music, starting with a Songwriter Round” at noon, featuring Kelly Flint, Lauren Mian and Bruce T Carroll, followed by the bands Elusive Emu, Mammiferes, the Garry Novikoff Trio (with Enid Blount Press on clarinet and sax Nirmal Chandraratna on cello.

Back at Thomas Paine Cottage (20 Sicard Avenue) at 2 pm all sorts of family-focused fun is planned: From 2 to 2:45 pm  Shake, Rattle & Roll – named among the “Best of Westchester” – will get toddlers, preschoolers, and grown-ups moving and grooving. And from 3 to 5 pm the adjacent Sophia Brewster one-room schoolhouse will host Spooky Skeleton Schoolhouse to celebrate the Day of the Dead/Dia de los Muertos with award-winning bilingual children’s book author Marisa Boan. Children ages 4 to 10 years will learn about this festive holiday with crafts and literacy activities both inside the schoolhouse and outside.

From 2 pm to 5 pm Paine Cottage will celebrate Family Fun 1910s Style! On July 14, 1910, the Paine Cottage was opened to the public as the Huguenot House: To complement New Rochelle’s new statue of Ragtime author E.L. Doctorow, Paine Cottage is going back to 1910 with badminton, croquet games, scavenger hunts, and more! Children can also paint pumpkins and enjoy additional crafts and games. There will be small giveaways for all children dressed in period costume. (Entrance and lawn games are free, small donation for arts and crafts.)

Finally, from 5 pm to 9 pm the venue will become the more adult-focused Huguenot House Saloon: Step back in time to party as New Rochelle’s ancestors did with music, drink and community. From 7 pm to 9 pm a buffet will be available. Enjoy roaring fire pits (weather permitting) and an outside showing of the musical Ragtime (with lots of popcorn to be had). The organizers invite guests to dress in period costume and receive a drink on the house! This is a free, rain-or-shine event; additional fee for drinks, and donations are welcomed for the buffet. All under 21 must be accompanied by adults. (NOTE: Due to recent rainfall and flooding this event may be modified: Call ahead to confirm.)

SUNDAY, October 22

Get an early start on Sunday at 7:50 am with a NRNY Mural Run (depart and return from parking lot at Hotel NoMa, Trademark Collection by Wyndham, 1 Radisson Plaza, NR; ) New Ro Runners – the local running club that is changing the shape of the community one mile at a time — has organized a “Mural Run” with a route that shows off the 20 NRNY Murals. Run begins and ends at the Hotel NoMa.

At 12 noon be part of the dedication of a new Statue of E.L. Doctorow (Huguenot Park, North Ave. between Eastchester Rd. and Forest Ave.). New Rochelle High School’s choir will perform a song from the musical “Ragtime” as members of the Doctorow family, sculptor Derek Chalfant, and local dignitaries gather with City Historian Barbara Davis and representatives of the New Rochelle Council on the Arts and New Rochelle Fund for Educational Excellence to celebrate this new public art.

Sunday afternoon brings plenty of outdoor options for art lovers with Art in the Garden from 1 pm to 4 pm at three different locations.  At 30 Oakdale Avenue, Art in the Garden: Inspired by Nature will feature a selection of works by members of the New Rochelle Art Association set in a private garden with an emphasis on native plants and a rain garden which helps manage storm drainage. Artists will be present to discuss their work. This is a collaboration between Healthy Yards New Rochelle and the NRAA.

Art in the Acres: Create Art Inspired by Nature will take place at the Ward Acres Community Garden (300 Broadfield Rd., NR across from Ward Elementary School) Design your own collages, flower arrangements, watercolors and painted rocks with garden themes and enjoy live music as the Co-Op Choir performs new works at 3 PM.

Art in the Garden: Paper, Clay & Canvas at the grow! Lincoln Park Community Garden (Lincoln Ave., between Prince and Memorial Highway, across from 95 Lincoln Ave.) will offer a family-friendly afternoon of Art and Garden Tours including their Native Plant & Butterfly Garden.  Visit with Westchester Land Trust’s Pollinator Pop-Up — an interactive mobile exhibit  for children offering hands-on activities and an opportunity to learn  about bees, butterflies, hummingbirds, and other pollinators – and meet artists who work in various media including mono-printing, echo- print jewelry, porcelain vessels , nature inspired digital prints and accessories and abstract fine art. A collaboration between The Lincoln Park Conservancy, Inc and New Rochelle Healthy Yards.

Organized by the non-profit New Rochelle Council on the Arts (NRCA) ArtsFest spotlights the diversity of arts and artists in our community: This year ArtsFest will feature 40 participating venues, representing the work of hundreds of artists. For a complete calendar of events visit

Sponsors for this year’s ArtsFest include ArtsWestchester, The City of New Rochelle IDA, EXRNY, The Appleyard Foundation, Charles Fazzino, BRP, Alvin & Friends, RXR, Town House Restaurant, New Rochelle Downtown BID, Francella Properties, an anonymous donor, and in-kind donors AJ’s Burgers and the New Rochelle Public Library.

The New Rochelle Council on the Arts is proud to be a grantee of ArtsWestchester with funding made possible by Westchester County government with the support of County Executive George Latimer.

About New Rochelle Council on the Arts

The New Rochelle Council on the Arts mission is to stimulate and encourage the study and presentation of the performing and fine arts and the public\’s interest and participation therein. It has been exemplified by our sponsorship of a vast number of exhibitions, theatrical productions, dance recitals, film screenings, lectures, and concert series. To create opportunities for the public to encounter and explore art and increase access to the arts in New Rochelle.

NRCA has been in existence for nearly 40 years — it was created by a resolution adopted by the New Rochelle City Council on April 8, 1975. Our mission is to stimulate and encourage the study and presentation of the performing and fine arts and the public’s interest and participation therein. This is exemplified by our sponsorship of a vast number of exhibitions, theatrical productions, dance recitals, film screenings, lectures, and concert series.