by Mitchell Kirk
Pulaski County is preparing for a day of art, music, dance and crafts for children and art lovers in Winamac and the surrounding area.
This free event, called Celebrating the Arts, will be from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. Saturday at Church of the Heartland, 890 E. Ind. 14, Winamac.
Saturday marks the seventh year the Winamac chapter of the Psi Iota Xi Sorority has organized the event. Mary Jane Rhodes, treasurer of the chapter, said the motivation behind it is to incorporate all the things the sorority supports — literature, music, arts, speech and hearing — all into one event.
“Arts has come through as a bigger piece of this community,” Rhodes said. “It’s something we’ve gotten behind and enjoy doing and we just wanted to do this as a give-back to the community.”
Stacy Bogan, an artist from Lafayette, will be returning to the event this year to do 15-minute quick-sketch portraits for visitors at a cost of $10.
“They’re not caricatures, but she does them in very short periods of time,” Rhodes said. “They’re very realistic. She charges a minimal amount and they make great Christmas gifts. She’s very eager to come to the community to do this and we love having her.”
Bogan, who has been doing portraits at fairs and festivals all over Indiana since 2002, estimated this will be her fourth year participating in Celebrating the Arts.
“It’s been my delight to be a part of their event,” she said. “They are just delightful and strong supporters of the arts.”
Bogan said she uses charcoal on newsprint and sometimes pastels to do the portraits and enjoys any opportunity to interact with the public to bring art into their lives.
“It’s not so much about capturing their resemblance, because you could use a photo for that,” Bogan said. “It’s about representing their essence. A lot of times when parents see their babies on paper, it brings them to tears. It’s so touching to be a part of that in their lives.”
The Eastern Pulaski Express Choir will be entertaining visitors with a selection of songs at 11:30 followed by a performance by Miss Emily’s Ballerinas, a local youth ballet group, at noon.
On display throughout the day will be artwork submitted by K-12 students in the surrounding area. The deadline for submissions is Friday, but Rhodes said each year usually brings in around 100 to 130 entries in the categories of painting, drawing and photography. Artists in various age groups will have the opportunity to win cash prizes.
Bogan said she is excited to see everyone’s work and praised the event for giving artists an opportunity to showcase.
“There are so many creative people in the community,” she said. “It’s good to have events like this that are accessible.”
In the gym of the church, kids will be able to engage in hands-on art activities that involve foil art, mosaic tiles, clay, drawing, sculpture and more.
“We like having hands-on artists actually showing how to make their stuff,” Rhodes said. “We like to have the kids see they can do it too and try it out for themselves.”
Mitchell Kirk is a staff reporter at the Pharos-Tribune. He can be reached at 574-732-5130 or email@example.com.
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