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Published: Wednesday, 4/20/2005

Bowling Green: ArtWalk!: It'll transform city streets into galleries

BY JENNIFER FEEHAN
BLADE STAFF WRITER
Bowling Green High School students Matt Mauk, left, and John Winkle chat with their teacher, Kim Sockman, about the art that will hang in the Grounds for Thought coffee shop. Bowling Green High School students Matt Mauk, left, and John Winkle chat with their teacher, Kim Sockman, about the art that will hang in the Grounds for Thought coffee shop.
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BOWLING GREEN - Downtown businesses will be turned into art galleries for a day on Saturday as part of the city's 13th annual ArtWalk!

From noon to 5 p.m., visitors can stroll through the downtown to see the work of more than 50 local artists as well as artwork from students in elementary through high school.

"The idea is to pair our local artists with our downtown merchants and have them showcase local art,'' said Earlene Kilpatrick, director of Main Street BG, which sponsors the event.

Because several of the participating businesses aren't normally open on Sunday, organizers decided to limit the event to Saturday this year. Artwalk! Is a way for merchants to attract new customers, too.

"It does draw people into the downtown area, hopefully helping the merchants,'' said Sandy Kerr, administrative assistant with Main Street BG.

About 27 businesses and other venues like the Wood County District Public Library are participating in ArtWalk!

Art students and teachers from the Bowling Green city schools have turned Grounds for Thought coffee shop, 174 South Main St., into their own art gallery, displaying about 50 pieces ranging from traditional oil paintings to metals, ceramics, jewelry, and computer graphic drawings.

Kim Sockman, who teaches drawing and painting at Bowling Green High School, said it's a great opportunity for the community to see the diversity of the district's art program.

"It's a very important part of any art program to display in the community,'' Ms. Sockman said. "I think an artist of any age wants others to see his or her own work. It's motivating, and it's just kind of fun. They worked so hard on these pieces, it's just fun to let them see the light of day.''

The library at 251 North Main Street will host the professional gallery, which will display the work of 15 area artists. Art work from area schools, preschools, and other arts organizations in Wood County will be on display in the community room of the Huntington Bank Building at 130 South Main St.

The Weston Arts Council will be offering hands-on activities for kids at Grounds for Thought during ArtWalk! Visitors also can complete an architectural scavenger hunt included in the event brochure. By locating interesting details from downtown buildings, winners will receive Downtown Bucks, which are gift certificates good at any participating downtown retailer.

Ms. Kilpatrick said some of the artists will be at the venue where their work is displayed, while all were encouraged to leave business cards for those interested in purchasing any of their work.

To see a complete list of participating merchants, go to http://www.wcnet.org/~downtown.

Contact Jennifer Feehan

at jfeehan@theblade.com

or 419-353-5972.


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