Musikfest recently unveiled its official 2015 festival artwork, and the results are bright, vibrant and enticing. The work showcases the Lehigh Valley region’s history as well as the festival’s unique past.

Brian Barto, an Emmaus, Pa. native, created the graphic illustration based off of signage found throughout the Lehigh Valley region. He also tied in unique aspects of the festival itself.

“I’ve always had an affinity for old signage that gains it character from a mix of forms, colors, materials and textures,” says Barto. “Given the history of the Lehigh Valley, and the diversity of the crowds, performers and artists who participate in Musikfest, this work of art really seems like a wonderful way to represent the spirit of that entire amalgamation.”

Barto, who currently resides in West Chester, Pa., graduated from Emmaus High School in 1993 and Kutztown University in 1997 with a bachelor’s degree in communication design. He creates artwork by taking discarded and used items and signs and reinterpreting them as regional homages, graphic statements and unique advertising vehicles through a mix of woodworking, painting, illustration and other mediums. He has worked with international brands, regional restaurants, boutiques and more.

The music festival hasn’t commissioned an artist to create its poster artwork since 2005. Barto’s creation will be featured on the Musikfest 2015 website, poster and festival mug, while also used in other merchandise and apparel throughout the year.  

Musikfest, the nation’s largest free music festival, boasts more than 500 performances on 14 stages across Bethlehem, Pa. over 10 days. This year’s 32nd festival will take place Aug. 7–15 

 

The return of familiarization trips is one key sign that things are beginning to return to normal in our industry. In mid-June the Philadelphia Convention and Visitors Bureau (PHLCVB) hosted more than 40 meeting and convention planners for a three-day familiarity tour. Their stay included a visit to the Franklin Institute and world premiere exhibit Harry Potter: The Exhibition, evening reception on the Rocky Steps, and a watch party as Philadelphia was announced as a host city for the FIFA World Cup 2026.

 

If you’ve hosted meetings at the Javits Center or other venues in Manhattan, you know that there’s more than enough to do in the borough to easily keep attendees busy for days.

 

Pittsburgh may be known as The Steel City, but it has plenty of greenery, too, and opportunities for groups attending meetings here to get out in nature. The Pittsburgh CVB, which has the tagline “Only in Pittsburgh,” has proudly shared the news that the Great Allegany Passage was named a winner in the 2022 USA Today “10Best Readers’ Choice” travel award contest for “best recreational trail.”