Chalk festivals have a fleeting nature; the pieces are created, viewed and swept away in short window of time. The community comes together in that brief interlude, celebrating the art, the people, and the place. This past weekend was the 20th annual festival in downtown St. Joseph, and chalk enthusiasts flocked to a piece of road above the bluff to experience just that. 

chalking in progress at the 20th Annual Chalk The Block
photo by Joshua Nowicki


As the sun rose on Saturday, August 6th, 36 artists from faraway places and local talent came to Broad Street to begin. We had outlined squares, filled some in with a white or black tempera, and had cases of chalk ready to go. From there, it was the artist’s space, where they invited us to watch their creative process. With a deadline of Sunday, August 7th at noon, they began. 


Here’s a look at the process, and the amazing finished pieces that held space in our little town by the lake for a few hazy days of summer. 

8.11Kim1 8.11Kim2

Artist: Kim Wood
Sponsor: Southwest Michigan Tourist Council

8.11Willie.5 8.11Willie1 8.11Willie2

Artist: Willie Zin
Sponsor: The Buck Burgers and Brew

8.11Tonya.5 8.11Tonya1 8.11Tonya2
Artist: Tonya Youngberg
Sponsor: Scooter Joe's

8.11Terralyn.5 8.11Terralyn1 8.11Terralyn2.5 8.11Terralyn3
Artist: Terralyn Lake

Look for two more posts on Chalk The Block coming this weekend! Read all about 3-D Art, and how one family is passing the chalk bug to a new generation.