Commissioner Rodney Ellis [left] and Mayor Sylvester Turner [Right] speaking to the crowd
Commissioner Rodney Ellis [left] and Mayor Sylvester Turner [Right] speaking to the crowd at the Art Bike Festival. Credit: Houston Park Board video clip

Houston Parks Board and the Orange Show Center for Visionary Art are delighted to present the return of Houston’s Art Bike Festival on May 13. The free, family-friendly event is open to all ages with a range of activities throughout the day at MacGregor Park and the Orange Show World headquarters. The Second Annual Art Bike Festival builds upon the success of the inaugural Art Bike Festival, which brought together over 2,000 Houstonians of all ages to celebrate the artist in everyone, along with Houston’s great parks and trails, through art and creativity.

“One of the best ways to ensure Houston maintains its unique identity is to provide ample opportunities for children from all of our communities to come together to display their passion and creativity,” Mayor Sylvester Turner said. “I encourage everyone, no matter your age, to come and participate this year. Thank you to our partners for bringing this inspiring event back for our communities.”

The city-wide festival will kick off with the Art Bike Parade at MacGregor Park in the morning from 10 a.m.–1 p.m. The parade is open to all Houstonians and registration is free. Over 100 student-led art bike projects of all shapes and sizes will ride in the parade as HPB and The Orange Show continue their partnership with Houston Independent School District. The parade will conclude with an award ceremony recognizing exemplary creations from HISD classrooms and community participants.

“The benefits of parks and greenspace have become increasingly well known, but what we can often forget is their unique ability to inspire the imagination of kids and adults alike. The Art Bike Festival reminds us of this in a wonderful way,” said Beth White, President and CEO of Houston Parks Board. “We were impressed with the creativity expressed in our inaugural event and look forward to seeing what inspired designs roll through MacGregor Park this May.”

The Art Bike Festival festivities continue after the award ceremony at the Orange Show! Starting at 6 p.m. and free to the public, the multi-site art center will have food, libations, interactive art and entertainment from world-famous jazz bassist and former Prince collaborator, MonoNeon. There will also be activities to transform regular bikes into human-powered art on wheels, ahead of the 50-year-old Moonlight Ramble. A new addition to this year’s festival, the Moonlight Ramble is an evening bike cruise where participants are encouraged to transform their bikes into their own crazy artistic creations. The cruise kicks off at 9 p.m. at the Orange Show’s campus and proceeds to Saint Arnold and then back to the Orange Show. Registration is $20 per rider and includes a complimentary beverage at Saint Arnold Brewing Company.

“We are excited to bring back the Art Bike Festival after a successful inaugural year and continue to increase the accessibility to the arts across Houston,” OSCVA Executive Director Tommy Ralph Pace said. “The ability to create another free, family-friendly event where personal artistic expression is valued and showcase the robust Houston art scene is truly special.”

The Art Bike Festival is presented in partnership with the Mayor’s Office of Special Events and the Houston Parks and Recreation Department, with support from H-E-B, Ruth Foundation for the Arts, The Brown Foundation, and Houston Independent School District.

“MacGregor Park is an incredible gathering place for nearby communities. It’s a perfect place to showcase the creations of these talented artists,” Kenneth Allen, Director, Houston Parks and Recreation Department added. “The Art Bike Festival is the kind of uniquely Houston event that makes our parks such special places for folks looking for family-friendly fun.”