Heavy rain forces St. Louis Art Fair to close shop Friday evening

ST. LOUIS - The 25th Annual St. Louis Art Fair ended early on its opening night when weather conditions south of St. Louis had event organizers concerned. The decision was made to keep fairgoers safe.

"As we've mentioned, it's a 'rain or shine' event, and rain is not the major concern here," said Sean Smothers, president of cultural festivals. "We just want to make sure that everybody remains safe."

There are more than 180 artists from all over the country in town for the weekend-long event. They are hoping the weather will not cause further delays.

Bozenna Bogucka and Lukasz Bogucki of Bo's Art are back to showcase their stainless-steel mesh creations at the St. Louis Art Fair for the first time since 2012.

"Everybody remembers that year because of the big storm," said Bogucka.

She said despite the strong rain and wind that weekend, the crowds still showed up.

"It turned out to be a very, very successful show. We loved it!"

Artists will use tents and tarps to protect their digital art, pottery, ceramics, jewelry, paintings and more. They are hoping the crowds will not be deterred by the weather.

"I've shown in galleries a lot, but what's so cool with art fairs is you actually get to meet the people who buy your work," said Laura Lloyd, a painter and sculptor from St. Peters.

Smothers said organizers are in touch with the City of Clayton and the National Weather Service. A text alert system was set up so event organizers could keep artists informed of weather conditions and closures.

Artists encourage people to come out and experience this annual event.

"The best artists in the country are coming to you this weekend," said wood sculptor Jay McDougall from Fergus Falls, MN. "It's an opportunity that shouldn't be missed because you don't have to go anywhere. You just have to come down to Clayton."

In addition to the artwork, the event features live entertainment, food, and activities for kids.

The St. Louis Art Fair is scheduled to begin again Saturday, September 8 at 11 a.m.