CASE STUDY

Omaha Summer Arts Festival

OBJECTIVE

Creating an annual festival celebrating the visual arts and offering an inclusive, multidisciplinary approach to arts programming.

STRATEGY

Developing an application and jury process to select 135 artists representing a spectrum of media and cultivating partnerships and collaborations to bring in additional elements including music from a wide range if genres, a hands-on Children’s Fair, a TasteFest and a local scene of demonstrating artists and local galleries designed to create a fully rounded arts event.

VGA co-founded the Omaha Summer Arts Festival and has worked closely with the Festival’s volunteer board of directors to produce and manage the event since its inception in 1975. Over its history, the Omaha Summer Arts Festival has attracted more than 2.5 million visitors and generated more than $15 million in the sales of art.

The Festival has been held in several different locations throughout its 49 years. Most recently, Omaha Summer Arts Festival moved to Aksarben Village, a vibrant neighborhood in the heart of midtown Omaha. The OSAF will celebrate 50 years in 2024 and continues to grow and expand as we attract new audiences from throughout the region.

Voted one of Omaha’s favorite annual festivals and consistently selected as one of the top arts festivals in the country by sources such as ArtFairSourceBook.com and Smithsonian.com, the Omaha Summer Arts Festival has grown to become one of Omaha’s largest and most vibrant public festivals with more than 80,000 people attending each year. The event features a juried Artists’ Market, a variety of stage performances, a large hands-on children’s fair, Young Artist Exhibition, TasteFest and more. 

 In addition to managing logistics and organizing the Festival, VGA spearheads fundraising, researches and writes grants and develops and implements a comprehensive marketing campaign to build awareness and promote both individual programs and the overall event.

“The quality of art, diversity of exhibitors, and overall event activities continue to keep the festival first-rate.”
Brenda Hermanek, Corporate Sponsorship Manager FNBO