Hays is proud to claim the oldest Arts Council in the state of Kansas. With an active year-round schedule of events and classes, the Hays Arts Council really shines during its seasonal art walks, which are free to all. On these special evenings, local businesses partner with artists to display artwork after hours. Here’s how to make the most of your Hays Art Walk!
See the current exhibition at the Hays Arts Center
Hays Art Walks usually revolve around an art exhibition and reception at the Hays Arts Center at 112 E. 11th Street. The gallery showcases works from regional and local artists and range from photography and painting to sculpture and ceramics. The HAC also has a year-round gift shop where you can purchase original art pieces.
Find some live music
As you stroll through the Downtown district, you are likely to find live music performances by local talent. During art walks you might find the Hays Symphony set up under the Downtown Pavilion at 10th and Main, a jazz group in a Main Street wine bar, or an impromptu sidewalk performance from a local musician.
Shop the Bricks of Downtown Hays
While you’re enjoying original artwork, you’ll also find unique local stores and boutiques with staff ready to help you find that special gift, a made-in-Kansas souvenir, or a fresh new outfit. Downtown Hays carries both the essentials and the unexpected, from children’s clothing and menswear to fresh flowers and custom-designed jewelry.
Explore new spaces
Downtown Hays is full of recent renovations and new investments. Check out the Hays Public Library’s full remodel of their first and second floors and peek into The Strand Event Center to see a historic theatre that has been brought back to life as an event venue.
Catch up with friends or make new ones
Half the fun of a Hays Art Walk is the people you meet. You’ll run into local artists, art students from Fort Hays State University, business owners, Hays natives, and visitors alike – all out enjoying the creative vibe.