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Sleeping Bear Dunes National Lakeshore (National Lakeshore) will host a special Centennial program entitled “Find Your Art in the Park” on Saturday, April 16, 2016, 1:00-4:30 p.m., at the Philip A. Hart Visitor Center, 9922 Front Street, Empire, Michigan 49630. This special event also kicks off National Park Week April 16-24, 2016.
The afternoon of short presentations will celebrate the ways in which the natural beauty and cultural legacy of the National Lakeshore have inspired the creation of visual and performing arts over the years. A highlight of the afternoon will be the unveiling of a recent gift to the park from the 2013 Grand Rapids ArtPrize winner Ann Loveless. Her four-panel textile collage “Sleeping Bear Dunes” will be installed in the Visitor Center gallery next to other selections from the park’s Artist-In-Residence (AIR) collection of visual arts. Dr. Mary McNichols, art historian and professor at Detroit’s College of Creative Studies, will kick off the program with a short illustrated talk on the power of place--Sleeping Bear Dunes--to inspire creative arts. Park Interpreter Susan Sanders will talk about the park’s AIR program. The third presenter will be textile artist and two-time ArtPrize winner Ann Loveless who will share the story of her inspiration and creation of her 20-foot textile collage. Moving on to the performing and narrative arts, Norm Wheeler and members of the Beach Bards will top the afternoon with an audio collage of story, poetry and music celebrating Sleeping Bear Dunes.