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Art, history mingle in downtown stroll
art walk
The Carnegie Arts Center is celebrating the 100th anniversary of the construction of the building that originally served as Turlocks library and will be a stop on Thursday's Art Around Town downtown stroll featuring local architecture and history. - photo by Photo Contributed

The popular art walk around downtown Turlock returns Thursday with a distinct history bent in recognition of the centennial celebration of the Carnegie facility.

Art Around Town is scheduled for 6 p.m. to 9 p.m. Thursday with six stops on the walk and docents from the Turlock Historical Society on hand to discuss the architecture and history of the downtown area.

“We are calling this event 'In Their Footsteps' because we want people to think about how many people over the past 100 years have strolled these streets, shopped in these buildings, and enjoyed what downtown Turlock has to offer,” said Carnegie Arts Center Director Lisa McDermott. “With the support for the Historical Society and several area restaurants, we think this event will bring attention to what’s going on in art, culture, and dining in Turlock’s vibrant downtown district.”

Attendees of the art walk may stroll between several art galleries and businesses located on and near Main Street to view and purchase art, taste food samples from nearby restaurants, and learn a little about the history of the area from museum docents.  Live music by the Red Pony Band will be featured at the Carnegie Arts Center.

The Carnegie Arts Center is celebrating the 100th anniversary of the construction of the building that originally served as Turlock’s library. In the early 1900s industrialist Andrew Carnegie began a philanthropic campaign to promote education and literacy in the United States by building libraries across the country. Turlock was one of the cities to benefit from Carnegie’s altruism when the Carnegie Library opened in 1916. For more than 50 years the site served as the town’s library until a new library was opened on Minaret Avenue. The site had various other incarnations over the decades, until it became an arts center in 1984.

The facility was undergoing a remodel in 2005, when an arson fire destroyed everything at the site except a few exterior brick walls. What remained of the original structure was incorporated into the current Carnegie Arts Center.

Art Around Town was developed last year with the idea of giving patrons a chance to view some of the creative endeavors of local artists for free and at the same time open up downtown Turlock to new and returning visitors.

The businesses that will be part of the Art Around Town event on Thursday are: The Carnegie Arts Center, 250 N. Broadway; Art Space on Main, 135 W. Main Street; The Gallery Finesse, 128 N. Center Street; The Community Art Gallery at Rex Klein Insurance Services, 132 S. Center Street; Turlock Historical Museum, 108 S. Center Street; and La Mo, 310 E. Main Street.