In just a few months, the temperatures will have warmed, the flowers will have bloomed and banners celebrating spring will hang from the light poles throughout Farmington’s historic downtown area.
The Mineral Area Council on the Arts and the city of Farmington are once again working together for the fourth annual "Art Blooms in Farmington" banner design contest.
“This is a great art contest for local students,” said Danielle Basler, the executive director for the Mineral Area Council on the Arts. “This year, 60 students will have a chance to have their banner hang from the light poles in downtown Farmington from April to November.”
As in the past, the art contest is open to local students from kindergarten through 12th grade in public, private or home-schooled. Basler added a student does not have to be sponsored by an art teacher. They merely need to fill out an application, which will be available on the council’s web site mid-January.
Since the contest began four years ago, the program has continued to grow in popularity along with the city’s endorsement of the project. According to Basler, this year the city is offering 60 students a chance to fly their banner over the streets of Farmington. This is an increase from last year where 50 students were selected and more than double the amount from the first year.
“When we started the contest four years ago, we really had no gauge for interest or success,” said City Administrator Greg Beavers. “Each year, we have had hundreds of entries, and have realized a need to expand the program to showcase the incredible artwork submitted by the young artists...it makes walking downtown far more interesting.”
According to Basler, the council is also excited about continuing the partnership with the city.
“It is really exciting to continue our partnership,” Basler said. “They have shown great support for the arts. They pay for each banner produced, do all the labor and hang them all up for us.”
For the city, the experience of helping young artists is well worth the effort put into event.
“In our view, there are many facets of a strong livable community; industry and commerce, recreation, and the arts are all important in making our community a great place to live and work.” Beavers said. "Through the years, we have actively sought out ways to promote both visual and performance, and view it as one of the building blocks of our town.”
Every year, the banner design contest has a different theme and this year is no different. Each student will have to relate their drawing to the theme of “It’s a Zoo Out There.”
“This should be a lot of fun,” Basler said. “It’s a nice theme and I think they will have a lot of animals hanging in Farmington this spring.”