By Nikki Jamieson
Sunny South News
A mosaic mural project will be helping to celebrate Coaldale’s 100 anniversary this weekend.
The Gem of the West Arts and Culture Committee and the Town of Coaldale have partnered together to host Centennial Fall Friday and the Centennial Mosaic Community Art Project on Sept. 27-28.
“The Centennial Community Art Project is something we’ve been kind of thinking about for a couple of years, and with Coaldale’s centennial this year, we thought this is a perfect opportunity to bring something to the community where the community does the project,” said Cindy Hoffman, community services manager for Coaldale.
“It’s something that’s going to be here forever. It’s an art piece for Coaldale, and the community will have a part in creating it and it’s also a legacy piece for future generations.”
“I really wanted something that covered all generations,” said Tammy Trelenberg, Gem of the West Arts and Culture Committee chair.
“We’ve picked a picture that really emphasizes our beginnings in agriculture, and so that’s memories for older people, the agricultural field to the whole community, and because it’s a community art project, then we’re really encouraging a lot of the kids to get involved, like we’re really asking the schools to get involved, we’re sending out mass calls to families, because it’s our 100, and it will be on display for years to come.”
People participating in the mosaic project will be painting a four-inch square tile. That tile will then be used to make an even bigger picture that, once assembled, will be eight feet tall and 12 feet wide. Hoffman stressed that participants don’t need to be great artists to take part, but they are asking people to try and paint something that represents Coaldale to them.
After the more than 600 tiles are painted, Mosaic Canada Murals, who will be running the tile painting sessions, will assemble the tiles into the bigger mural. The picture formed by the individual mosaic tiles is being kept a secret until the final project is unveiled during Night of Lights, prior to the parade, at it’s new home at Literacy Lane, the pocket park by the Coaldale Public Library.
Mosaic Canada Murals had been responsible for the Canada 150 mural, which saw them doing similar projects around Canada to create one giant mural.
“Knowing that Coaldale’s 100th was coming up — I know that Canada 150 is very important as well — but we wanted this to be very special for the Coaldale 100, for the anniversary basically,” said Hoffman. “So that is why we delayed and we did not do it at Canada 150, and we have pushed it back a few years just to coincide with Coaldale’s 100.”
As the last week of September is Art and Culture week in Alberta, Trelenberg said the arts and culture committee thought it would be fun to do something for it, but they didn’t have the manpower in previous years. This year, they were given an opportunity to do something for the Centennial, and jumped to do it.
Painting sessions will be approximately one hour in length. Due to limited space and tiles, they are asking for people to pre-register at coaldale.ca/100 to reserve their tiles, although some walk-ins may participate depending on space. Each sessions can accommodate up to 35 people.
In addition to the painting sessions, people can have fun during the Centennial Fall Friday festivities from 1-8:30 p.m.
The last local flea market of the season— which typically takes place at the museum on Fridays Starting in August through to the end of September — will be taking place in the curling rink parking lot, and games, food trucks and non profits will be setting up activities in Millennium Park while the tile painting goes in the Hub gym.
“To come out for an hour to paint seems a little silly, we’d like to make it a fun art and culture weekend,” said Trelenberg. “It’s very relaxed, a fun fall (day), kind of again, thinking back 100 years, what kind of fun was everyone having? Just outside, having a good time, playing games, throwing beanbags about, things like that.”
On Saturday, painting sessions will continue from 9-11 a.m. at the Hub gym. A free pancake breakfast, sponsored by Telus, the Gem of the West Museum Society and the Town of Coaldale, will go at the community centre.
Hoffman thanked the Community Foundation of Lethbridge and Southwestern Alberta for giving them a $5,000 grant to put on the mosaic project, and encouraged people to come out.
“This is a tremendous opportunity for the community, including residents of Coaldale plus the surrounding rural families, to be a part of Coaldale’s history, because this is something that everybody can come out and bring their families from toddlers to right up to grandma and grandpa, come out, paint a tile, and that’s going to be there forever,” said Hoffman. “Families can come back in 20 years and say, ‘I painted that tile’, and it’s going to be a part of Coaldale’s history.”
The tile painting sessions and Centennial Fall Friday will go Friday, Sept. 27, from 1-8:30 p.m., and tile painting sessions and a free pancake breakfast will go Saturday, Sept. 28, from 9-11 a.m. For more information and to register for tile painting sessions, visit http://www.coaldale.ca/100.
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