June 4th, 5th, and 6th

Art will heal us and help us recover from the challenges we have and continue to face. Arts and Culture are an integral part of day-to-day life in Salem and this annual festival has become a source of pride and revenue for hundreds of creative professionals and a major economic boost to the local community with over 6000 attendees annually. Through the COVID crisis the creative community has really stepped up to help us get through a lot of challenges and we want to find ways that we can support the creative community and contribute to the wellness of our City with the Festival as a platform and as an event.

Although the festival will be a little different than usual it will still celebrate and highlight the creative community.

You can find all the applications for these opportunities here. 

  • Mural Slam
    (Artists will be creating the murals either at their homes for an install after the festival or socially distanced around town, weather permitting)
  • Performance stages
    We are spreading out around town this year, there will be no main stage to prevent crowds and gathering. This will give you the perfect opportunity to explore the Downtown and be entertained! We are committed to continuing to compensate all performers.
  • Community Art Project
    Every year we choose a community art project that allows the community to have an active part in the festival. This year artist Linda Mullen will be creating “Together” which will provide an opportunity to reflect on the last year; what we have lost, what we are grateful for, what we have learned. Together, we will create a large installation piece consisting of white flowers that will be hung on a pre-constructed frame. We invite you to participate and hope that this process will be a ritual for reflection and healing.
  • Street Fair Vendors
    In an effort to keep people safe and allow for distancing we will be featuring vendors on Derby Square, Charlotte Forten Park and the Salem Common. Explore all the nooks and don’t forget to pop into the local stores as so many of them also feature local artisans!
  • Art Around Town and focus on small business

Rather than a centralized gallery, smaller galleries and shows featuring local artists will be present in businesses and storefronts throughout the Downtown. The Salem Arts Association is programming their first Salem Art Walk, where artwork by SAA artists will be featured in storefront windows around down. We are working with local photographer Susanne Bothe to highlight the humans behind the local businesses we know and love. These gorgeous portraits will be on display during the festival. Multiple community partners are working on their own initiatives for the weekend of the Festival, so keep your eyes peeled for art everywhere!

Please follow us on social media @salemartsfestival
Tag us in your posts with #saf2021


Image Image


Emporium 32
The House of the Seven Gables
Steve and Darcy Immerman
Northey Street House
Moody's Home & Gifts
DeIulis Brothers Construction
Marblehead Bank
The Cabot
Salem Night Tour
Mass Cultural Council Festivals Grant
Lobster Shanty
Modern Millie
Jolie Tea
Coons Card and Gift Shop
Salem Cultural Council


What are you working on? We know that there are so many creative humans that have been staying active through the past year and we want to see what you have been working on! Tag us on social media @salemartsfestival and use the hashtag #artwillhappen


Follow along on Social Media to see it all unfold and tag @salemartsfestival in any of your #artwillhappen happenings.

Thanks to all of the sponsors that have agreed to continue their support regardless of the big in-person event being a little different this year. 

Salem Main Streets

Salem Arts Festival Highlight Photos

The Salem Arts Festival is a joint project of Salem Main Streets and Creative Collective – Salem Main Streets is funded in part by the City of Salem, Kimberley Driscoll, Mayor and the U.S. Dept. of Housing and Urban Development. The Salem Main Street Initiative is a preservation-based, volunteer-driven strategy for commercial district revitalization. The Creative Collective connects creativity, community and commerce through a series of traditional and non-traditional marketing efforts, advocacy, events and resources.