Waldport Banners Build Community | Oregon ArtsWatch
EDITOR’S NOTE: “Waldport Banners Build Community,” Cheri Brubaker’s story about a new public art project, was originally published June 30, 2021, by YachatsNews.com, an ArtsWatch community partner. ArtsWatch republishes the piece with permission.
A few years ago, artist Amy Anderson responded to art collector Greg Holland’s social media request for people interested in forming a Waldport community art group.
Anderson’s husband, Greg, and his friend and neighbor, Diana Buckley, joined Holland – now mayor of Waldport – and five others to form the Alsea Bay Arts Center to help spread education and appreciation of art in the community.
With much of the group’s early years spent organizing, and then the ensuing pandemic banning gatherings, the group was thrilled to see their first banner project go up this week on lampposts along US Highway 101 in Waldport.
Community partnerships are at the heart of the artistic group’s mission. The banners are a partnership with 4-H, who sewed the banners, and Waldport High Schoolcareer and technical education course, which screen-printed the backs.
Artists and novices decorated the 32 banners. The artists’ ages ranged from 11 to 80 years old.
“We make sure that all projects are about bringing the community together to make new connections and new threads between people,” Anderson said.
The group believes more rewarding activities for children, the elderly and visitors are needed in the area, she noted.
Buckley agreed, remembering the lack of activities available to her as a teenager growing up in a small town. She values and finds reward by offering an opportunity to those who might discover a talent, drawing inspiration from the opportunity to express themselves artistically.
The banners will remain in place all summer after Labor Day. The group will repair them before offering them for auction this fall.
Anderson expressed his gratitude to Michael Guerriero, coordinator of the Yachats banner project, for sharing his expertise; at Polly Plumb Productions purchases for financial and moral support; and to Pioneer Connection, to hang the banners.
“It has really been a community effort,” she said.
Limited last year by the pandemic and still by the lack of physical meeting space, the arts group is hoping to find a home at 320 NE Grant St., the city-owned building recently vacated by the Waldport Heritage Museum. Anderson said the group will apply to lease the space once the city issues a request for proposals on how best to use the building.
Once located, the group plans to offer workshops and classes, have a small gallery and a small performance space.
On the horizon for the arts group, Anderson said, is a music festival. With the musical connections of Terry Hill, founding member of the arts group, the tentatively titled Folk ‘n Art Festival is slated for next year.
The group is currently communicating via Facebook, where information and events are displayed. The group is looking for volunteers, especially those interested in social media, website design, or coordinating volunteers. People who are not on social media can contact Anderson directly at 530-646-9012 or [email protected]