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The Suburbanite
  • Springfield students contribute to Lock 3 calendar

  • Since 2005, Springfield High School senior advanced art students have been participating in the Countdown to First Night Calendar. Students design and create a large banner to hang at Lock 3 in Akron for all holiday visitors to see.

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  • Since 2005, Springfield High School senior advanced art students have been participating in the Countdown to First Night Calendar. Students design and create a large banner to hang at Lock 3 in Akron for all holiday visitors to see.
    A different banner is unveiled every night leading up to First Night, the annual New Year’s Eve celebration in Akron.
    Art student Destany Matulavich said she was happy about the project.
    “I really enjoyed working on the canvas with the other art students,” she said. “I'm excited to have it on display at Lock 3 for everyone to see.”
    The huge calendar was begun Nov. 23 and is the largest community visual art display in Northeast Ohio.
    “I'm not sure why I thought this project was so entertaining,” said art student Lucas Burgess. “Maybe because of the creativity each of the students could bring to the canvas. Or just the large scale of the piece. I had a blast working with my fellow classmates, and I felt like this was a great bonding time.”
    Art teacher Nancy Michel, who has been teaching art for 34 years, 31 of which have been in Springfield, said it always amazes her to see what the students come up with on their thumbnail sketches.
    “This year's design was created by Agusta Lucas, and the students chose ‘Cookies for Santa’ as the title. Each student had a section of the canvas to paint, and each designed their own cookies for Santa as well,” she said.  
    Lucas said when they first started the canvas he thought it was going to be something that would take longer than the time they had to complete it.
    “Everyone worked together, and we not only got it done, but it came out wonderful too,” he said. “It was a great project, and I will always remember and cherish being able to work with everyone.”
    Michel said she really enjoys participating in the event.
    “It allows my seniors to collaborate on a project and together,” she said. “They solve design and color problems and, of course, going to Lock 3 for the unveiling ceremony is so much fun.”
    The unveiling was Nov. 30, and students were joined by parents, Springfield residents and the Spartanaires.
    Art student Kelsey Carter said the canvas was probably the most difficult and most exciting project she has ever done in art.
    “Organizing who did what when it came to painting was one of the hardest challenges,” she said. “Seeing what everyone did and how they decided to paint certain things was really exciting. I'm glad I got the chance to help work on it. We all laughed so much and helped each other when we made mistakes. It definitely was a great experience.”
    Page 2 of 2 - Although there are other projects in the making this year, including a Holocaust art competition, creating self-portraits and more, Kasey Xiong said she thought this project is one she will think of often.
    “The canvas looked great, and everyone took so much of their time to paint,” she said. “It was really fun, probably the best thing I have done so far and definitely something to remember about my senior year.”