Kids don’t let a little rain drown their artistic efforts

Virginia Rich, 3, paints the airplane she made at the Kiwanis Youth Arts Village.

By JAN LARSON McLAUGHLIN

BG Independent News

 

A little rain can’t deter true artists.

Just ask 3-year-old Virginia Rich, who was intent on painting every inch of the wooden airplane she built minutes before. She wasn’t about to let the threat of some raindrops get in her way.

“I don’t think it’s keeping people away,” Katie Beigel, youth arts chairperson, said early in the afternoon. “Every once in a while there are a few sprinkles, and then it holds off.”

Besides, the kids seemed oblivious to the precipitation.

“They are painting in the rain. They don’t care,” Beigel said.

Paintings hang to dry in front of the library.

The volunteers also came through in spite of the damp drizzling weather. A decision had already been made to cancel the Kiwanis Youth Arts Village for Sunday due to the forecast for heavy rains.

“Some of our Sunday volunteers were really awesome and came out today,” Beigel said.

Many of the art projects seemed impervious to the wet conditions. The wide brimmed  brown paper hats held up remarkably well in the drizzle. The tie-dyed shirts weren’t harmed. And the construction projects hammered through the sprinkles.

Greylin Durbin, 7, of Tontogany, still had her purple hard hat on from making a car from chunks of wood.

“I like how they have amazing stuff to build and make,” she said.

Her mom, Lindsay Smith, appreciated the effort that goes into incorporating the children in the arts festival.

“I think it’s awesome,” Smith said. “They get to build their own hats and cars.”

Next, Greylin was headed to the painting station to put a coat on her car.

“I’ve always wanted a red car,” she said.

A volunteer helps with making hats.

Nearby Brady Stierwalt, 7, of Bowling Green, was getting some help from a BGSU construction management student as he built a boat.

“Oh my gosh, I love it,” said his mom, Keri Stierwalt. “They get to create things with their own hands.”

Dan Stanton, of Bowling Green, was entrusted to carry his kids’ artwork – including an airplane painted with every available color.

“We bring them every year, and every year they get to experience something different,” Stanton said.

Children wear their homemade hats.

One of Biegel’s goals this year was that kids get a little education about “going green” with their artwork. One of the new projects in the arts village was turning old T-shirts into grocery sacks. That idea was born in a survey taken as last year’s festival.

“Everybody asked for bags to carry home their stuff,” Biegel said.

While the floppy brimmed hats returned this year, the decorations to adorn the hats came from recycled items.

“I want kids to use things they see at home to make art,” Biegel said. “It makes art seem more attainable.”

Other art projects were created from leftover crafts, like the round cardboard backings for pizzas, and cornhusks. Kids were urged to use their imaginations.

“We have no rules here, you can use what you want to do whatever you want,” Biegel said.

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