Goshen News, Goshen, IN

Local News

March 3, 2013

Nappanee to be dotted with apple art

NAPPANEE — Nappanee will be blooming with apples this spring — apple art, that is. Residents and visitors will see 4-foot apples stationed around town, each with its own appealing artistic design.

Jeff Stillson of Stillson Studios is an artist and the project coordinator. He said the idea was germinated from working on the Elk Art project in the city of Elkhart and he wanted to bring a similar project to Nappanee.

“But no governing body could undertake it,” he said.

Stillson said he believed in the project so much he was determined to find a way to make it happen, so he asked city officials for permission to pursue it if he found a way to make it happen and he received their blessing. Stillson set out to find individual and corporate sponsors for the apple art. He had a goal of 20 and sold 13 by the designated deadline of Feb. 14.

The purpose of the project is to attract visitors to Nappanee with the expectation that once they are in town they’ll shop, dine and tell others about their experience.

“We have so many attractions for visitors — this just adds one more element for why people should come to Nappanee,” he said.

Other communities have had success with this type of public art exhibit. Chicago had Cows on Parade. Mackinac Island had Turtles around Town. St. Joseph, Mich., has a different theme each summer season from Hot Diggity Dogs to the upcoming Planes, Trains and Automobiles. And Elkhart County had Elk Art on parade.

Stillson said the big difference between this project and the Elk Art project is that was done as a fundraiser for CAPS. Businesses sponsored the cost of creating the artwork and then the Elk were auctioned off with the proceeds going to CAPS. With “It’s A-peeling Art,” the cost of the sponsorship is covering the cost of the artwork and the sponsor then owns the piece.

“Once the event is over — if it ever is — the apple is theirs to do with as they want. They can sell it, give the money to charity, take it home, whatever they want,” he said.

There is no end date in sight at this point. Stillson hopes the project will grow and there will be apples all over town year around.

Stillson said it costs the same to ship two of the 4-by-4-foot fiberglass apples as it does to ship 20. So to keep the cost of the sponsorships down, he is ordering them in quantities. The goal is to get the first 13 designed, painted and installed uptown and then take sponsorship orders for the next round.

Stillson has brought six local artists, aside from himself, on board to paint the apples. Sponsors can create their own design, choose which artist they want to work with (or one will to them). Four of the six artists are from Nappanee and two from NorthWood High School.

The design on the apple can be representative of the sponsor’s business, but not be an advertisement so no logo designs will be accepted. Each piece will have a name chosen by the artist and owner.

The apple art will be able to be out year-round because McCormick Motors is using automotive clear coat to weatherproof them. Bontrager Concrete is donating the concrete bases that the apples will sit on and SRP Custom Graphics is supplying the plaques for the donor’s names.

They plan to have the already-commissioned artwork in place downtown by May 1.

Stillson said he’s grateful city officials and Jeff Kitson of the Chamber of Commerce and Redevelopment Commission have gotten behind the project and are supporting and promoting it.

Kitson explained why he was supportive of the project. “A-peeling Art is a community project — not something one person is benefiting from. Jeff (Stillson) had a vision to pull the business and artistic community together for mutual benefit and that’s what the Chamber supports — members bringing ideas and running with them — especially when they help grow retail and other business.”

“The project will bring arts and culture to Nappanee to benefit tourists as well as the retail shops — it will add another element why people come to Nappanee. They already come for Amish Acres, antiques, furniture, the quilt gardens and murals, now the apples will be a reason to come and possibly bring another demographic to town,” Kitson said.

Kitson was also excited about the local artists working with the sponsors. “What’s really neat is that NorthWood High School art students and local artists will be working with you,” he said, noting that by having the majority of apples in the downtown area, “People are going to notice. I really believe we’re stepping up.”

Kitson also noted that the apples are big enough to be noticed and for families to take photos with, but not too imposing. Right now plans are to have them inside the downtown flower beds.

Stillson, who has been president of the redevelopment commission for several years, shared he’s passionate for promoting his city.

“Nappanee has to start setting itself apart from other destinations,” he said. “I think this is a great first step to do that.”

Stillson said he didn’t consider himself to be business-minded in the sense that when it comes to promoting businesses his artistic mind can help with aesthetics, making a business look better.

“So there’s only so much as an artist I can do to help my community — but I can put art downtown; I can do murals — that’s what I can do,” he said.

Kitson said what’s neat about the project is the collaborative effort between the artists, the merchants, retailers and Chamber. “Bringing everyone together, working together,” he said. “I hope the apples continue to grow!”

1
Text Only
Local News
  • GN140730 Spore mug Charges filed against parents in Syracuse boy's death SYRACUSE — According to a story first reported by The Times-Union in Warsaw, the parents of a 12-year-old Syracuse boy are facing criminal charges as the result of their son's death in June. The Times-Union reported late Friday night that Candy Sue

    August 22, 2014 1 Photo

  • GN140823 new paris railroad crossing 01 Railroad crossing upgrades coming NEW PARIS — Significant safety upgrades are on their way for the Division Street railroad crossing in New Paris. That’s the word from Will Wingfield, a media relations representative with the Indiana Department of Transportation, who recently indicat

    August 22, 2014 1 Photo

  • Lifelong Learning fall courses announced GOSHEN — The Lifelong Learning Institute of Elkhart County is offering fall courses. These short courses are designed to provide stimulating and affordable classes in many fields for active seniors. There are no tests or grades, and no previous studies or degrees are required.

    August 22, 2014

  • Fresh shrimp business approved GOSHEN — Finding fresh shrimp in Elkhart County just got a little easier.

    August 21, 2014

  • NWS GN140822 john hertzel (2) John Hertzler relishes role with Goshen Historical Society GOSHEN — Visitors to the Goshen Historical Society’s museum might not know John Hertzler is there, tucked back in an office beyond the rows of historic documents, photographs and artifacts.

    August 21, 2014 2 Photos

  • South Ninth Street area under boil water order South Ninth Street, between East Jackson and Franklin streets in Goshen, is under a boil water order from noon until further notice.

    August 21, 2014

  • GN140821 Pike Street Project 2 INDOT meeting held to discuss Pike Street project GOSHEN — Major changes may be on the way for a small section of Pike Street in downtown Goshen.

    August 20, 2014 2 Photos

  • 0821 goshen college challenge Locals embrace ice bucket challenge It’s a challenge that has united participants with the shared sensation of an icy burst of water, sopping wet clothing and video evidence — all in the name of philanthropy.

    August 20, 2014 1 Photo

  • GN140821 nisly complaint Complaint filed against state rep candidate Accusations of wrongdoing, in the form of a complaint to the Indiana Election Commission, have been levied against District 22 representative Republican nominee Curt Nisly.

    August 20, 2014 1 Photo

  • GN140820 dometic groundbreaking Dometic breaks ground on significant expansion in Goshen GOSHEN — As Dometic officials gathered for a groundbreaking ceremony for the $7 million expansion of their Goshen distribution center Wednesday, the work was already underway in the background. “It’s happening right now,” said Dave Schutz, vice presi

    August 20, 2014 1 Photo

Parade
Magazine

Click HERE to read all your Parade favorites including Hollywood Wire, Celebrity interviews and photo galleries, Food recipes and cooking tips, Games and lots more.
Poll

Three Goshen elementary schools — Chandler, Chamberlain and West Goshen — are providing free meals to all students during the school year as part of the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s Community Eligibility Provision of the Healthy Hunger-Free Kids Act of 2010. Nearly 80 percent of students at Chandler, 89 percent of students at Chamberlain and 78 percent of students at West Goshen already qualify for free or reduced-price lunches based on their family income. How do you feel about the new lunch program?

I think it’s a good idea to feed all the students free of charge
I think those who can afford it should pay for their school meals
I think all students should be required to pay for their school meals
     View Results
AP Video
Furry Roommates: Dorms Allowing Cats and Dogs Chase Rice Defends Bro-Country 'Jersey Shore Massacre' Pokes Fun at MTV Series Raw: Wash. Mudslides Close Roads, Trap Motorists DC's Godfather of Go-Go Honored Ukraine Calls Russian Convoy a 'direct Invasion' Girl Meets Her 'one in the World' Match Coal Gas Boom in China Holds Climate Risks Japan Landslide Rescuers Struggle in Heavy Rain Raw: Severe Floods, Fire Wrecks Indiana Homes Endangered Red Wolves Face Uncertain Future Raw: Russian Aid Convoy Arrives in Ukraine Okla. Policeman Accused of Sex Assaults on Duty Dominican Republic Bans Miley Cyrus Concert Raw: Israeli Air Strike in Gaza Raw: Bodies of MH17 Victims Arrive in Malaysia Attorney: Utah Eatery Had Other Chemical Burn