First Friday Art Walk features local businesses, arts, cuture

Matt Boland

Topekans will once again celebrate their vibrant and active artistic culture by bringing together artists and art lovers this Fri., March 2, for Topeka’s First Friday Art Walk.

First Friday events will take place at multiple locations throughout Topeka.

Ballet Folklorico De Topeka, located at 814 N Kansas Ave., will be offering a Latino dance class for beginners. The dance studio will be bringing in dance instructors from Kansas City for two hours of exhilarating dance lessons. The dance class runs from 7- 9 p.m. Fri. evening and has a donation suggestion of at least $3 per person.

Amused Art Gallery, located at 907 N Kansas Ave., will be showcasing Artist Alexandra Jael as the featured artist for the First Friday Art Walk. Jael is an Italian born artist living in Topeka. Her dark whimsical style, expressed in many mediums, conveys her thoughts on depression and living as a woman in modern society. Amused will also be featuring Kritika Shetty, a Washburn art student who is excited to share her art with a community she appreciates so much.

“I enjoy that there’s all sorts of people that enjoy art so it’s always nice to see people that have the same likeness as you and its just great to appreciate art together,” said Shetty.

Both Jael and Shetty’s pieces will be able to be viewed from 11 a.m.-9 p.m. at the gallery.

Kyra Miller, an art major with an emphasis in painting and drawing, is a regular at First Friday Art Walk.

“I definitely like looking at the galleries like NOTO Arts Center, Yeldarb art and antique gallery and also Studio 831. I haven’t eaten down there yet, but I’m actually going down there this Friday I really want to go to the Wheel Barrel. I heard its good.”

The Tasteful Olive, located at 2900 SW Oakley Ave. is highlighting two Topeka artist for First Friday. The first is Tracy Gillaspy of High Plane Iron Works, who makes jewelry out of horseshoe nails. The second is Karen Meyer, a calligraphist who will be doing calligraphy art throughout the day. The gourmet grocery store will also have fresh homemade cinnamon rolls, cookies and European bread prepared by Baking Traditions for sale. The Tasteful Olive will be open 5:30- 7:30 p.m.

Matryoshka Tattoo will be showcasing local artwork created by up and coming Topeka High students. The tattoo shop will be showcasing the student’s examples of photography, design, jewelry ceramics and drawing all the month of March inside the shop.

The Burger Stand will be hosting a double feature at this Fridays Art Walk, hosting charitable events for both ARTSConnect and Washburn’s own, Sigma Phi Epsilon. In collaboration with the Lawrence Brewing Company, the restaurant will debut its new beer, the Burger Stand Pale Ale. For every Burger Stand Pale Ale and Arty Cocktail sold The Burger Stand will give$1 back in support of ARTSConnect.

The Burger Stand will also be hosting a Skrizzly Adams Benefit Concert for Big Brothers, Big Sisters of Shawnee County in collaboration with Sigma Phi Epsilon. The concert is the bookend to Sigma Phi Epsilon’s philanthropy week. There are tickets available to purchase through Sigma Phi Epsilon and tickets will also be available for purchase at the door. Tickets are $5 per person. The concert will take place Fro., March 2, 8-10 p.m at The Burger Stand.

For more information on the artists, events and participating businesses featured in First Fridays, visit