The county of Saratoga and its residents are proud of its tradition of supporting local artists. The “First Saturdays” event, which continues this tradition, takes place on the first Saturday of each month in downtown Saratoga Springs between Broadway, Spring Street, and Beekman Street. The event, which until recently was held on Thursday nights, is a part of the city of Saratoga Springs’ Art Council’s efforts to bring attention to a thriving art scene of Saratoga Springs and its neighbors.
The event expands on the efforts of Beekman Street galleries who in the past would host art openings free to the public. Since starting “First Saturdays” the entire downtown community has come out in support of local artists and galleries. Local restaurants provide food and beverage specials, and the Capital District Transit Authority (CDAT) will run free trolley service to and from the event. Visitors are treated to a festive atmosphere and are welcomed to peruse local galleries, get a quick bite to eat from a local restaurant, and enjoy the thriving downtown district.
Not only do these events bring attention to the local artists and galleries, but they also mark a larger revitalization for the Beekman Street area. Largely considered as the “Village in the Spa City,” the Beekman Artist District was previously a residential neighborhood. The architecture of the district, with its modest buildings, is reminiscent of the working class families who used to call Beekman Street home. Now it is quickly becoming the cultural hub of the city with its unique shops, galleries, locally owned restaurants, and arts-centric events.
“First Saturdays” are a great way to learn and experience Saratoga Springs and the surrounding county in a unique way. Visitors both young and old will not forget the quant village feeling of Beekman Street and its numerous galleries, restaurants, and retail stores. It is a blend of culture, educational activities, and entertainment for the entire community on a Saturday night.