The Clinton Herald, Clinton, Iowa

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September 23, 2013

Artists flock to Morrison

MORRISON, Ill. — From chaotic swirls of paint to perfectly planned-out images, a sea of mini-murals decorated the streets of Morrison on Saturday.

Featuring a variety of music, festival food and booths, the 19th annual Paint the Town event was full of activity. Ranging in age and from both the local area and out of state, people flocked to the community event.

Co-chairwoman Barb Bees was thrilled with the turnout Saturday. More than 1,400 squares were purchased by Friday, with many more people registering at the event. Bees added that every year, it seems to grow.

“It is as fresh as it was the first year,” said Bees, thanking event sponsors for allowing it to continue.

The yearly day of art brought many returning participants, as well as first-timers. For some local families, attending this is a yearly tradition.

“It’s just a part of our community and we do it every year,” said Al Ohlsen, of Morrison, directing his son, Tristan, 7, and his daughter, Sarah, 20 months, to where their squares were located.

Inspiring Artist Anna Stamschror, 17, of Milwaukee, could be found painting an imaginary skyline on a store window. Her father is from Morrison and they return for the event each year.

Originally from Morrison, Valerie Boles, of Fulton, Ill., had never participated in Paint the Town. This year, she decided to bring her boyfriend’s daughter with her and give it a try. As she painted a pink heart in her square, she found herself greatly enjoying the event.

“I like it,” Boles said. “I think it’s pretty fantastic.”

Kendra Underwood, 9, of Albany, Ill., is not sure why she loves the event. She loves to paint and said she guess she likes having a larger canvas to work on.

“And this is pretty big,” Underwood said.

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