Pet rocks were a fad back in the day when a bunch of southwest Minneapolis activists decided to stage a neighborhood art fair. Really. Or maybe pet rocks hadn't yet been invented in 1963 when the Uptown Art Fair was launched. It was that long ago.

In the 50 years since its founding, the Uptown Art Fair has grown from a neighborhood event into Minnesota's second most popular festival after the Minnesota State Fair. The three-day event, which always occurs the first weekend in August (i.e. August 2 - 4, 2013), typically attracts 375,000 visitors. Its success inspired other neighborhoods to get into the game, spawning  the Powderhorn Art Fair and the Loring Park Art Festival which run for two days the same weekend.

To commemorate its 50th season, the Uptown event assembled a time capsule that includes a flash drive of "memories" recorded by Uptown fair veterans, a 2013 Uptown bike-and-trails map, a bowling chip from Bryant Lake Bowl and a Minneapolis police department badge among other memorabilia. Artist Shane Anderson of Apple Valley produced a commemorative print, shown here, to mark the occasion.

The time capsule will be entombed in the now-under-construction Walker Library on Hennepin Av. With technology changing at lightening speed, will anyone know what a flash drive is -- or be able to play one -- in 50 years when the capsule is opened? 



Artist Shane Anderson of Apple Valley proudly displays his 50th Uptown Art Fair commemorative print.

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