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May 11, 2014

GETTING IN ON THE GROUND FLOOR: Clarksville to debut chalk walk May 31

CLARKSVILLE — A common childhood activity is about to be elevated to an art form in Clarksville.  

Clarksville Parks & Recreation and Arts Bridge have teamed to bring the arts to the town’s residents and visitors. To date, that’s taken the form of expanded art class offerings and monthly seminars to discuss the arts. But now they’re thinking big.

How big? They want to turn the entire rear parking lot at Clarksville Town Hall into a canvas. On May 31, the town center will serve as the site for Clarksville’s inaugural Chalk Walk Festival.

Chalk walks have become a big draw in towns like Jasper and Elizabethtown, Kentucky. Clarksville Parks Marketing and Programming Coordinator Ken Conklin hopes that this year’s chalk walk will be the first of many for years to come.

“My goal in the parks department is to try to create some family-friendly events that everyone can come out to and have a good time,” Conklin said. “At this event, we actually get to expose them to the arts as well, so it’s kind of a fun thing.”

Chalk walks are events where artists of all skill levels work to turn a parking space into a work of art using nothing but large pieces of colored chalk. Clarksville’s event will hold competitions for professionals, families and novices, and there’s no such thing as too little talent to join in the fun.

“This is for fun, and everybody is creative,” said Arts Bridge President Joyce Nokes Ribble. “You do not have to be a professionally trained artist to participate. There’s a professional artist category, but there are many other categories and slots that have been held for families, hobbyists and people that just like to draw.”

The event space has enough room for 50 entrants, and registration is now open. The fee is $5 per entry. To register, visit clarksvilleparks.com or call 812-283-5313. Registration will close May 24, and entries will be register on a first-come, first-served basis.

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