NORTH KINGSTOWN, R.I. (WPRI) — It’s a town tradition, synonymous with summer: The annual Wickford Art Festival.

The two-day event, featuring over 180 fine artists, attracts thousands of people to the village each year. This year, organizers were expecting a higher than usual turnout.

“Oh, the festival is a display of fantastic artwork from all around New England, local work,” festival director Brian O’Malley said. They’re here not only for, you know, the art and looking at the art hopefully buying the art, but just for an experience. And then we’re trying to encourage people to go into the village and experience Wickford village, which is gorgeous. Recently it’s been rated in the top ten most historic villages in the country.”

“Meeting different people from around, I met so many people yesterday, and they come through they ask questions and you explain to them and you know. I’m a storyteller so I told so many people about my stories,” Zambian artist Joseph Mushipi said.

Last year for social distancing, the festival broke with tradition and relocated to sprawling Wilson Park, where it’s remained since.

“This festival has been produced and running since 1962, so it’s here and people know about it. Year after year they can come here to Wickford and experience a great event,” festival director Brian O’Malley said.

You can learn more about the Wickford Art Festival on the Wickford Art Association website.