Well folks, I think it's finally going to happen. At last we have set a date for groundbreaking!
The Max Hayes/Soapbox Derby public art project, more than two years in planning, will start to become a reality. Footers are scheduled to be dug and concrete poured next week. The block and sandstone will be laid the following week.
Work on the stainless will take place over the winter, final installation is scheduled for spring, and the dedication will take place in June.
The concept of arts integration, although becoming accepted methodology in academic subject areas in education, has taken a very different twist here at Max Hayes Vocational High School.
Several years ago, we began integrating art into teaching the trades classes by inviting sculptors to work in the shops with the welding classes and the building construction students.
I was able to get funding to pay the artists through an ICARE grant sponsored by Young Audiences of Greater Cleveland.
We established a partnership with the Cleveland Institute of Art, and brought numerous artists/professors to the school to work with the trades students.
At the same time we were coordinating with the City of Cleveland, the Detroit Shoreway Neighborhood Development organization, various neighborhood block clubs and businesses, the Soapbox Derby Commission, the Cement Mason's Union, the Brick Layers Union, and last but certainly not least,(in fact, most importantly)the Steven Tatar Studio. The result is going to be a beautiful new entrance to the Cleveland Soapbox Derby Park, featuring an elegant sanstone wall and two stainless steel, art deco styled, soapbox derby racecars.
I will try to post the project drawings done for the planning commission later this week, as Steve told me had digitized them.
This is gonna be sooooo cool!
As a little P.S. to all of Cleveland's chronic complainers who like to whine and say,
"Nothing ever gets done in this city"
"People have no vision here"
"Clevelanders don't know how to work together"
"It's all just a lot of talk"
"New ideas don't stand a chance."
"The Cleveland Schools suck."
At Max Hayes, we refused to get caught up in all of that negativity...We're makin' it happen...Ha!
First quarter grades are due this week, and I may not have time for a press release. Know anyone in the media? Please have them e-mail me or call the school. Thanks.