Although 150 may seem like a lot, it did not take long to compile them, said Jan Griffin, head of the art commission. People emailed their favorites right and left, she said.
Each year, the commission spearheads the planning for a new public art project. This year, they commissioned an arch that pronounces Waynesville as the “Gateway to the Smokies.” The piece was installed in the mini-park at the corner of Main and Depot streets downtown.
The commission prides itself on using only donations to pay for each work. And since the commission has already chosen its next piece, it decided to get a head start on fundraising as well.
“It thrills me to see that a community can come together to support public art,” Griffin said. “It adds such a dimension to this downtown area.”
The upcoming work will feature the flora and fauna of the Smoky Mountains and be installed on the wall of the building flanking in the mini-park. The commission will soon begin accepting applications from different artists who hope to create the piece. It can be made of any material but must be made to last at least 20 years and incorporate lots of color, Griffin said.
“It is going to be busting with color,” she said.
It will be the third and final touch to the mini-park, which also features a decorative metal rail sporting salamanders in honor of the Smokies’ status as the salamander capital of the world.
Proceeds from the cookbooks will benefit the project. The cookbooks are for sale at City Bakery, Fifi’s Fine Resale Apparel, Gateway Club, Nico’s Café, Pasquale’s Pizzeria, Maggie’s Galley, Blue Ridge Books, Salon 212, Apple Blossoms, High Country Style and Fun Things Etc.