Arts Place Prepares for Arts in the Parks

Staff Writer

With school out of session, parents may wonder what they can do to keep their kids occupied and entertained throughout the summer. Here to help with that mission — for one week — is Arts Place with its annual Arts in the Parks program.

The program will run in St. Marys from June 10 to June 14 and will give kids a chance to create outdoors with their friends. Also offering classes in Celina, Coldwater, Minster, New Bremen, St. Henry, Fort Recovery and many locations throughout east central Indiana, there is a program for everyone.

At $5 per class and a $30 maximum per student, the classes fit well into most any budget. Auglaize-Mercer Center Director Heather Dowell said the center has even figured out a way to make the classes even more affordable.

“Scholarships are available for any child that is eligible for free or reduced lunches, which makes the program even more accessible,” she said. 

This year’s Arts in the Parks will feature some furry friends to go along with the art children will create. Partnering with local animal shelters, the center will give the kids not only subjects for their art but also give them a chance to make some new friends. 

Starting on June 10, participants will work on animal themed crafts including making sculptures from recycled materials as well as clay, painting and tie dying. At one of the last classes — which Dowell said are filling up quickly — kids will create a clay portrait of animals from the shelters to bring awareness of the needs of the animals. Then, at a special event on June 20 they will exhibit the artwork and introduce the pets portrayed in the art. 

The center will also have adoption information available for the animals to try and give the pets a chance a landing in a forever home.

Interested participants can sign up for classes by visiting the center at 207 E. Spring St. during regular hours. The Auglaize-Mercer Center is open from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Tuesdays through Fridays.