Arts commission seeks contest entries

Submission deadline Jan. 31; winner receives $100, art put on city utility box



A utility box was decorated by photographer Ken Carper and placed on the corner of Main Street and Grand Avenue. Winning contestants will have their art showcased on a utility box in Pullman on Grand Avenue.

JAKOB THORINGTON, Former Evergreen reporter

The Pullman Arts Commission is still seeking submissions for its utility box wrap, where a community member’s design will be displayed on a utility box in the city.

Members of the commission observed 25 submissions from five contestants during its meeting Tuesday night. A decision will be made on the winner next month.

The deadline to submit a design is Jan. 31. The winner will receive a $100 stipend and have their design showcased on the utility box on Grand Avenue near the Jess Ford of Pullman dealership, commission chair Jeri Harris said.

“All [submissions] are very different and come from people you wouldn’t expect to submit art,” Neill Public Library administrative assistant Lori Lewis said.

Several changes were made to this year’s Pullman ArtFest by the commission.

Commissioners approved a change to the start and end time of the festival. This year, it will begin at 9 a.m. and end at 6 p.m.

Harris said the decision was made because several people showed up early during last year’s ArtFest with nothing to do.

“This is our third year running this so we’re still trying to figure out the best time to open,” she said.

With a new start time, the commission also decided to require food vendors set up throughout the entire day. Vendors will not be required to stay open the entire day, Harris said.

Commission member Judy Dunn said food vendors have been unenthusiastic about participating in previous years despite the festival being meant to help downtown business owners while getting the community engaged with art.

“I would like to see businesses take a greater part,” she said.

The commission voted for 30-minute intervals for entertainers to perform during the event, with the potential of a longer “headliner act.”

Harris said solo entertainers will be paid $50 per 30 minutes, duo performers will be paid $100 and larger groups such as a band will be paid $200.

Colfax Arts Council President Debbie Stinson began the meeting with a presentation of how the council boosted art in Colfax.

Harris said the two groups were faced with different scenarios because Pullman’s commission must go through city government for every action. Colfax is not branched with the council.