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Creative kids tour arts center as reward
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GAINESVILLE — Some kids in Hall County took advantage of their last day of winter break by sleeping late and watching television. Others perused the art at the Quinlan Arts Center.

On the day before their art debuts at the Lakeshore Mall, about 20 children from the Boys & Girls Clubs toured the Quinlan Arts Center, and some got their first taste of a real art exhibit.

"(We went) so we can become better artists, and see different artwork," said 10-year-old Adaure Anyanwu.

While touring the arts center, which is currently featuring a group of Atlanta-based artists, some of the children rushed around, taking notes and making sketches of their favorite art. Some of them even wanted to volunteer at Quinlan’s summer art camp.

"It’s amazing to see how involved those kids were," said club volunteer Marianne Scott. "I was worried they’d be bored."

Nearly 20 children, ages 7 to 12, spent an hour and a half exploring the exhibits of still life, portraits and landscapes Monday on their last day of winter break.

"We had some great conversations," Scott said.

Anyanwu said she was surprised by the cost of the paintings at the Arts Center. Some of them cost in excess of $2,000.

"They cost a million and a hundreds," Anyanwu said.

The tour was a reward for those who created their own drawings and paintings.

Their own artwork will be on display at Lakeshore Mall in Gainesville for two weeks starting today.

In February, the art will be judged in a regional art competition. Those who qualify will go on to a national art competition in June, said Sheronda Kessler, arts coordinator for the Boys & Girls Clubs of Hall County.

"They’ve worked really hard," Kessler said.