Fine weather, full crowds attend Art on the Prairie Saturday

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Perry native Mildred Elliott, left, now living in Red Oak, and Velma McDowell of Perry admire the fragile beauties in the Mary Rose collection during Saturday's annual Art on the Prairie event in downtown Perry.

Perry’s sixth annual Art on the Prairie marketplace and festival opened Saturday to record crowds and warm temperatures in Perry’s downtown business and cultural district.

This year’s art fest brought together about 65 plastic or visual artists, from painters and photographers to sculptors, ceramicists, workers in glass and wood and so forth. Musical and literary artists were not neglected, with every exhibition venue featuring songsters of various shades. A special lower room in the Hotel Pattee was reserved for the poets.

Along with the hotel, other venues included the Security Bank Building, the Center for Towncraft, the Carnegie Library Museum, the Perry Public Library and La Poste.

floriana hayes
Floriana Hayes

“This is easily the largest crowd ever,” said Floriana Hayes of Urbandale, who has sold her pastel drawings at Art on the Prairie since the event began in 2010.

The annual art marketplace is organized and led by the Art on the Prairie Committee, presided over by President​ Mary Nichols, Vice President​ Jenny Eklund, Secretary​ Colleen Eckhoff, Treasurer​ Vicki Lage and including committee members Iris Coffin, Lisa Cooper, Mary Teresa Fallon, Carolyn Guay, Jen Heins, Pete Malmberg, Mary Murphy, Jerry Narland, Diane Schlegel, Heidi Segner, Judy Shirbroun, Patricia Saulsbury Snyder and Monique van der Heijden.

This formidable phalanx of females is assisted by Technical Director Sally Farley. Perry City Administrator Sven Peterson also lends technical support​.

The event continues Sunday, Nov. 15 from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m.

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