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CRAA awards mini grants to Holmes County schools

The Chipola Regional Arts Association (CRAA) recently awarded mini grants to several Holmes County art and theatre classes. 

CRAA held its monthly meeting last week at Holmes County High School (HCHS), where the culinary class served lunch and the organization honored recipients of the $250 grants. Each teacher made a presentation of what they chose to do with the funds. 

Jill Cook from Bonifay K-8 utilized the funds for the spring musical production of “Matilda Jr.”, saying she was proud to say all 100 of her students were able to participate in the production from set building to performing. As a token of thanks to CRAA, Cook presented a framed playbill signed by all the students.

Ponce de Leon High School who art and theatre teacher Heath Carroll bought canvases for art class, where students put together an abstract artistic mural interpretation of the classic “American Gothic” painting. Carroll says the grant was also used to purchase a new PA system was purchased for the theatre class. The system will “play a large role” in the upcoming spring production of “The Curse of Lady Magnolia.”

Black lights were the big purchase for HCHS art teacher Vicki Steverson, whose students will create paintings to be viewed under the light. Steverson said she saw the method used elsewhere and knew her students would love it. 

“At one of our school functions, there were black lights, and the kids wore fluorescent colors to be seen better,” said Steverson. “I knew my students would love to do a project with them, so I got the lights and now we will be glowing up the classroom.”

Heather Tyre, art teacher at Poplar Springs School, was unable to attend the luncheon but used her funds to purchase supplies for each of her art classes, which include students in grades four and eight, as well as high school.

The final presenter was Ricky Ward, who heads up the theatre department at HCHS. Ward used part of his grant to purchase the music for their production of “Decades of Music.” As part of his presentation, attendees were escorted to the HCHS theatre, where members of show choir performed several songs and dances.

While the presentations were different, each teacher’s message to the CRAA was the same, an expression of gratitude for the CRAA’s dedication to the arts.

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