Painted pianos and live music will be coming back to the streets of Traverse City this summer. Two new “street pianos” will be unveiled at a free and family-friendly event from 5:30–7:30 p.m. on July 20.

Life and Whim, a Traverse City-based lifestyle brand and e-commerce retailer, began its street piano initiative in the summer of 2016 with a piano located at the Chase building on Park and Front Streets. This year there will be two pianos, one still at the corner of Park and Front Streets and the other next to the new Kayak, Bike & Brew building at 229 Garland Street in the Warehouse District.

The two new pianos are being painted by students and faculty of Interlochen Center for the Arts, and musicians from Interlochen will be playing the pianos during the unveiling event.

Event Details:

  • 5:30 p.m. a musician from Interlochen will be playing at the Park and Front Street piano. There will be free helium balloons and noisemaker instruments available for kids.
  • 6:00 p.m. Norte! will lead a walk from the first piano through downtown to the second piano location.
  • 6:30 p.m. a musician from Interlochen will begin playing at the second location. There will be a table set up with fun crafts for kids.

An after-party featuring drink specials for event participants will be held at The Workshop Brewing Company, which is located right next door to the second piano (221 Garland Street).

“Traverse City is such a creative place that values art and culture, and the people of Traverse City wholeheartedly embraced last year’s street piano,” says Life and Whim co-founder Jay Harrington. “We are beyond thrilled to be working with Interlochen Center for the Arts, and to be receiving support from Traverse City Tourism, which will make this year’s event extra special.”

Sneak peek of the new street piano!

The unveiling event and street piano initiative are made possible with generous support from Traverse City Tourism, which is the primary event sponsor. Other businesses sponsoring the event include Miller Snowden Development Group, Kayak, Bike and Brew, and TentCraft.

The pianos will remain on the streets throughout the summer and fall, weather permitting. Members of the public are welcome to play the pianos and listen to others play as well following the event.

About Life and Whim
Life and Whim is a new Traverse City-based lifestyle brand for active, outdoor families. Life and Whim is a “direct to consumer” brand that designs, manufactures and sells Northern Michigan-inspired clothing for adults and kids, hard enamel pins and books meant to empower and encourage kids to spend adventurous time in the great outdoors through its online store. Life and Whim also plans and executes community events and initiatives such as the Traverse City Fairy Trails and Traverse City Street Piano.

About Interlochen Center for the Arts
The nonprofit Interlochen Center for the Arts is a recipient of the National Medal of Arts and the only organization in the world that brings together: a 2,500-student summer camp program; a 500-student fine arts boarding high school; opportunities for hundreds of adults to engage in fulfilling artistic and creative programs; two 24-hour listener-supported public radio services (classical music and news); more than 600 arts presentations annually by students, faculty and world-renowned guest artists; a global alumni base spanning eight decades, including leaders in the arts and all other endeavors.

—Press release provided by Life and Whim

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Photo(s) by Life and Whim