It happened on October 27th, thanks to LAC&G's director, Marybeth Lensel connecting us with Riverside's fantastic housing management. Everything went splendidly!
Setting Up the Class
The room they had for the class was beautiful. They had acquired lots of pumpkins for the event...plus paints, brushes, and even more supplies. I know that money is tight nowadays, but the energy and resourcefulness of the staff made it go far!
Without their insights, support, and art supplies this wouldn't have happened!
We started to set the tables up as the kids got off the bus. In hindsight, we should have gone with Amy's idea and just set it up right away. We couldn't hand out supplies fast enough!
Pumpkin Painting Begins!
The kids wanted to help. They wanted to paint. They were just SO excited! What fun!!!! Little helpers everywhere!
I didn't know what to expect, besides the 20~ screaming kids who signed up. In truth, it was more like 30 screaming kids. Additional people showed up, and they were welcomed!
The place was packed...and loud. Did I mention loud?
They were all so positive. So energetic. Amy and I just kept handing out art supplies. Spooky pumpkins were painted, of course!
Amy wisely kept things organized and sane...and I just played waiter. You need black paint? Okay, be right back! You need some fresh water? Ok! You need some stick on eyeballs? Sure; Let me hunt some down!
More Halloween Pumpkins!
Below: an image gallery with more artists and their beautifully spooky painted pumpkins!
I didn't photograph every pumpkin. There were simply too many and not enough time. Here are some of them, though! Enjoy the work of these youthful geniuses! Kids are great!! ♥
The Class Calmed Down...
When the art class calmed down a bit, Amy and I took turns shooting pictures of pumpkins and happy faces! She did a fabulous job getting to know the happy kids too! ♥
I got to see how it's done: I really don't know how to talk to new people, even when they are in first grade!
Cleaning up the mess
As boys and girls finished painting their pumpkins, they wanted to help us clean up. Boy did we need it! There were 5~ tables to clean, and fold up. There were messy hands abound! There was a lot of stuff everywhere.
There was paint everywhere, and tons of brushes to clean (as you can see!)
We had plenty of help though. Kids, parents, staff, we got that place sparkling in no time!
More Art Classes!
Everyone should have access to art, especially kids, but many don't have access to it. That's especially true nowadays, with public art education budgets having been slashed and cut.
I want to do more free art events to bring more art to local kids. I'd like to continue enriching the lives of kids at Riverside, and also maybe do some smaller free classes at Leominster Art Center & Gallery.
So you know, there are also paid classes at Leominster Art Center & Gallery! There's a big list of topics, workshops, and classes for all ages, by many creative people.
About Riverside Village Apartments
They've got about 360 children (and many more parents/adults) living there; Around 8-9% of the kids showed up for the event! As you might guess, it's a big apartment complex!
The community was really fun, and I know that the management has worked hard to keep it a safe, fun place for kids to live.