Get creative on the Whitefish Chain with hosted painting events

Masterpieces created by a recent TAP visit at Manhattan's in Crosslake. Photo courtesy of TAP

Masterpieces created by a recent TAP visit at Manhattan's in Crosslake. Photo courtesy of TAP

For a cloudy day, low-key afternoon or just when you need a break from the sun, there are plenty of opportunities to express your creative side while you visit the Whitefish Chain area. A couple of companies offer hosted painting classes or studio time where all the materials are provided- and so is the cleanup! 

The Travelling Art Pub (TAP) makes periodic appearances at venues around the chain, where they provide all the materials and an instructor to create your own masterpiece!

For around $35, TAP helps each participant re-create a pre-determined painting with the group, and usually includes a break for drinks or appetizers. Because they offer guided experience by a featured artist, there’s no experience or artistic talent necessary. TAP advertises a relaxed social setting where you can visit with friends while you create your masterpiece. Many of the events feature different paintings and mediums, so there’s plenty of opportunity for variety.

Upcoming TAP events near the Whitefish Chain include:

  • July 26, 6 p.m., at the Fifty Lakes Bar and Bottle Shop, creating “Split Rock Lighthouse” with acrylic on canvas
  • July 27, 6 p.m., at the Jenkins VFW, creating “Bold blooms” with acrylic on canvas
  • July 28, 6 p.m., at Manhattan’s, creating “Summer night sky” with acrylic on canvas
  • Aug. 15, 6 p.m., at Bites in Pine River, creating “Bull skull” with acrylic on canvas
  • Aug. 25, 6 p.m., at Manhattan’s, creating “Mason flowers” with acrylic on canvas

For a full listing of upcoming events, visit the TAP website or Facebook page. Sign up online at If you can’t make any pre-arranged event or have a big group, TAP will also host private events such as baby showers, bachelorette parties, team building outings and more. See the website for more details.

Kicks on 66, an artisan gallery in Crosslake, also offers frequent classes and painting studio time. Regular painting hours in the Simply Jane Studio are from 9:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. or 1-3:30 p.m., Tuesday through Saturday. Choose a pre-drawn canvas and start painting!

Painting in the Simply Jane Studio costs around $10. According to the Kicks on 66 website, the studio is non-profit and employs disabled adults to create the canvasses.

Kicks on 66 also offers painting classes with local artist Kathi Mann on Thursday evenings and Saturday mornings. The paintings, which vary with each class, use a variety of media and backgrounds. Thursday classes are from 6-9 p.m.; Saturday classes are from 9 a.m. to 12 p.m. 

For more information and additional upcoming events, check the Kicks website or Facebook page (weekly newsletters are posted on the Facebook page). While you visit Kicks, check out their gallery of artwork comprised entirely of Minnesota artists and artisans. The store also has pop-up galleries, trunk shows, artist visits and more!

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