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Artists Brush Off Past Failures, Win Riverfest Artwork Competition

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Nicole Grimes, KMUW
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Meghan and Juanta Wolfe, joined by a friendly robot, won the 2020 Riverfest artwork competition.

A Wichita couple, Meghan and Juanta Wolfe, have won the 2020 Riverfest art contest.

Their art for the River Festival’s poster and buttons was unveiled today at Emprise Bank. They also were presented a check for $4,000.

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Meghan Wolfe is a freelance illustrator and photographer. She’s also president of the local chapter of the American Institute of Graphic Artists.

Juanta Wolfe is a freelance muralist and teacher for Arts Partners’ Generation STEAM.

Meghan Wolfe says she entered the Riverfest contest five times without a win and wanted to give up. Her husband encouraged her to try again.

Together, they won.

“Anytime I think of Riverfest, like if I close my eyes and think of an image, I think of the contrast between the dark night sky and all the activities below, all the lights, all the fun, and that’s what I tried to capture with my sketch for the poster,” Juanta Wolfe said.

“We both love funk music, and love the musical aspect of Riverfest,” Meghan Wolfe said. “So, we really wanted to have that funk, fun concert vibe.”

Riverfest will offer new events in 2020, including a mobile app with a game called Fest Quest, where players can win money.

Other events include a team competition called Admiral’s Cup, an equipment rodeo and a DJ battle. Popcon will return, which is an anime and esports event.

Paddle boats and kayaks will be available to take out on the river, and there will be stock tank races. The musical lineup will be announced on social media on Feb. 19.

Riverfest is May 29 through June 6. Buttons will be available for purchase at QuikTrip on May 3.

Pre-sale buttons are available now.

Nicole Grimes is an intern in the KMUW News Lab.