By allowing ads to appear on this site, you support the local businesses who, in turn, support great journalism.
Dabs of creativity: Students rewarded with artistic outing
Classes with top attendance get an 'Arty Party' at Quinlan Arts Center
Fair Street Elementary third grader Brisa Loyola, 9, reaches for a stamp to make an impression in her piece of clay Friday at the Quinlan Visual Arts Center during a class field trip. The class had the best attendance in the first semester of the year for their school.

Although learning is its own reward, groups of local students are getting an added incentive for showing up to school regularly.

The Quinlan Visual Arts Center has spent the last few days rewarding the class with the best attendance records at each of Gainesville City Schools System's elementary schools.

The winning classes were given an individual Arty Attendance Party at the Quinlan.

On Friday, Joy Holeman's third-grade students from Fair Street International Baccalaureate World School enjoyed their party, which included a ceramics project lead by Mary Ann Klimek.

The students spent a good part of their morning in the center's studio space stamping and painting plaques to be fired by the Quinlan's ceramics team.

There were colorful birds, hearts and messages of love galore.

"Mine is a present for my mom," said Akeel Jones, one of Holeman's students.

When it came time to add the glaze to their designs, a hush fell over the room as the student artists concentrated on their work.

"It's good that the parties were tied to their attendance," said Mary Hull, co-owner of the Pen Dragon art supply store at the Quinlan, who was lending a helping hand.

"Having good attendance really speaks to their level of focus."

The excursion also included a tour of the current Youth Art Month Exhibition hanging in the Quinlan's galleries and an ice cream treat.

The entire trip was free for the students.

"It was fun," said Lizet Alvarez, one of Holeman's students.

"I want to do it again."

Besides Fair Street, the other participating schools were: Centennial Arts Academy, Enota Multiple Intelligences Academy, Gainesville Exploration Academy and New Holland Core Knowledge Academy.

The art parties are a collaboration between the Quinlan and the Greater Hall Chamber of Commerce.

When it came down to their strategy for winning, Holeman says there wasn't one.

"We actually didn't know there was a contest," Holeman said.

"They just like coming to school."

Regional events