HANNIBAL – Ideal weather on Saturday, Aug. 3, helped the Hannibal Arts Council's Wild and Wacky Art Adventure to become a big success, as children hurried from one type of art to the next all morning in Central Park.
The most popular area has always been the box town hosted by the Friends of Historic Hannibal, where cardboard boxes have been built into several rooms for painting inside and out. Large shirts are provided to protect the children's clothing as they paint.
Some painters were experienced, such as Elora Mitchell, whose mother said she paints at daycare. Another happy painter was Lily Purdy, whose mom said box town is her favorite and she comes to do it every year.
This year the box town had some competition from the booth where youngsters made small rafts with sticks, directed by Tom and Becky (Cameron Cox and Annabelle Peck), along with Tom and Becky Program volunteers. The children soon discovered the Central Park fountain was perfect for floating their little rafts, tied to strings. Among those floating their rafts were Easton and Adley Lehman.
Yarn dolls were made by many girls, directed by Becky Thatchers and other volunteers.
Some tried yoga, taught by Emily Trevathan.
One busy area was manned by Tarry Horney and Friends, as Jina Harbit and other children were enthusiastically drumming on cans of different sizes.
Nearby, the Hannibal Free Public Library was helping everyone make bookmarks.
One booth was teaching about nature, as the Missouri Master Naturalist Chapter member Gale Rublee was helping make wood necklaces decorated with beads. Among those making a necklace was Maxwell Klarich of St. Louis, whose family came to visit the Mark Twain Boyhood Home and Museum and was happy to learn about this special event.
At a booth advertising agamographs, children were coloring and cutting apart pictures to be put together by Antornette Allision in this form of folding art.
Decorating their own T-shirts was also popular, as Parents As Teachers personnel helped Maria Borgmeyer and others color and decorate them against cardboard placed inside the shirts.
Another art was offered by the Northeast Missouri Humane Society, where children not only decorated and made paper bag puppets, they also could watch a puppy and two kittens play in cages.
The animals are available for adoption through the regular process at the animal shelter, according to Humane Society shelter Director Janet Smith. She welcomes visitors to the shelter, which is open weekdays from noon to 5 p.m. and Saturdays from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. She added that local people are becoming involved in fostering animals that need special care, such as bottle feeding tiny kittens, and after fostering an animal the resident may decide to adopt it.
In an area for babies, Maci Anderson sat on a blanket as she reached out to touch a large stuffed animal.
See photo gallery for more young artists.