For more than 30 years, the Lakewood Arts Festival has squandered major party potential by allowing its crowd of 10,000 shoppers to dissipate at the onset of cocktail hour. People come every year to browse blown glass, ceramics, turned wood and all the other things you typically find in white vinyl festival booths. But no one ever thought that maybe all those people would like to keep right on partying for a few more hours — until now. Lakewood Alive executive director MaryAnn Crampton and Lakewood Is Art director Ruthie Koenigsmark are throwing the first-ever Downtown Lakewood pARTy today, and it sounds almost cool enough to distract from that ridiculous capitalization scheme. The music lineup includes funky jazzbos Chris Vance and the Vance Music Studios Trio, punks Kill the Hippies, the bluesy Madison Crawl, garage-rockers Argyle Denial and DJ Tim Lane. The Lakewood Arts Festival starts at 10 a.m.; the Downtown Lakewood pARTy starts at 5 p.m. on Detroit Ave. For information about the Lakewood Arts Festival, go to Lakewoodartsfest.org; for info about the pARTy, go to downtownlakewood.org. A $10 ticket to the latter includes a beer and sandwich. — Michael Gill
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