I'm always so inspired by the creative things people do in their everyday lives, and the unique ways in which they express themselves. That individuality has really been evident during the two community art projects I've been involved with as part of the Marysville Arts Coalition.
Last winter, more than 60 wreaths were completed by Marysville residents, business owners and members of community service organizations. The designs ranged from elegant to playful, from traditional to funky. Each one was a unique piece of art that represented its owner in a graphic way.
Over the past six weeks, the Arts Coalition has turned its attention to umbrellas, and the colorful cutouts should be appearing on light poles lining State Avenue this week. While the quantity doesn't match the wreaths, the creativity displayed is certainly equal.
The basic umbrella shape has been turned upside down and on its side; its canopy has been transformed into a flower garden, a baseball, a sequined tutu, a wedding cake. Each one is unique, which is what art is all about.
A big thank you goes out to Kurt Hollstein's students at Getchell's School for the Entrepreneur, who took on the challenge of creating designs for customers who couldn't (or didn't want to) decorate their own umbrella. As usual, there was a flurry of last-minute requests and the talented students did a great job of completing the orders to meet the deadline-which was a valuable hands-on, practical lesson for these aspiring business owners.
As with the wreaths, Jim Ballew and his staff at the Marysville Parks Department have gone above and beyond to collect and make space for the umbrellas (while they're still storing the wreaths for re-installation this winter) and to install them on the city's streetside poles.
And finally, the Marysville Arts Coalition owes a debt of gratitude to the local businesses who allowed us to use their storefronts for distribution points for the umbrellas. Many thanks to Darlene Scott at Carr's Hardware, Brent and Lori Emory at E&E Lumber, and our own staff here at North County Outlook. These businesses made space for displays, collected payments and managed the umbrella inventory as a community service.
Additional businesses served as distribution spots during the wreath project, and we're grateful to CraftMart, HomeStreet Bank and Ornamental Arts Gallery for their participation and support.
E&E Lumber also provided the plywood for both the wreaths and umbrellas at their cost.
Partnerships are the key to success for most projects, especially for a young organization like the Marysville Arts Coalition. They are also a good indication of the health of a community, and I'd say Marysville is a very healthy community.
Now on to the next project: "It's Raining Art" on April 26 from 2 to 8 p.m. at 1347 State Ave., in the former Oroweat bakery outlet store. Visit with local artists, sample craft beer, wine and vodka, enjoy live music and find out more about the Marysville Arts Coalition. I hope to see you there!
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