People can take so many tours in Central Oregon—tours of rivers, breweries and pub houses, tours of the marijuana industry... even tours of the most photographic spaces. But what about taking a tour of art?
- Teafly Peterson
- John Flannery and fellow art adventurers in The Bend Tour Company's open-air electric car.
On one recent, terribly rainy day, I hitched a ride aboard The Bend Tour Company's Art Tour. John Flannery co-operates the tour. My fellow travelers were a local woman and her two friends from Denver, Colorado. In the middle of our tour, a downpour began. While our guests from Denver were clearly bummed, I felt I had the perfect view of that beautiful storm from Flannery's open-air electric car.
What's great about seeing art in this manner is that Flannery doesn't just include the main spots, such as Art, the statue downtown, or roundabout sculptures; the tour also includes the hidden in-between gems, smaller statues at the entrances to buildings or minute architectural details of buildings inside and out, the history of the buildings where art is housed and how the townspeople were thinking about the placement of art as Bend has grown.
I forget sometimes just how much art we have in Bend. The sign of a healthy community is the art that's there. Where there's art, there's life. Flannery's art tour does a great job of showcasing the life in Bend. From the sculptures depicting history to the impromptu creations of Deschutes Brewery workers, Flannery shows you little nooks and crannies where creativity is flourishing.
Flannery is an exuberant storyteller, filled with genuine joy and love for what he's sharing. That's the best thing an artist can ask for: someone who loves and shares their art.
Bend Tour Company
Art and Cultural Tour of Bend
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