Chair #1 - Louisa Jane Home Furnishings & Design

Louisa Jane, located at 207 S Sampson St, Tremont, IL 61568, is here to help a home owner find something unique for their home. This business was founded by Janet Rocke, a local designer, who has spent countless hours and time with home owners creating one of a kind looks in this cookie cutter world.

Our style in our studio ranges from vintage to industrial, from classic to natural. We definitely have a specific look to Louisa Jane, but we love helping each and every person find the specific pieces that they need to complete THEIR look in their homes. Come visit us and see for yourself! We would love to meet you.

In our design center, located across from the studio, we combine our decor, and our custom painting, with our eye for home design. We can design entire projects from the ground up, and we provide the following materials: cabinetry, ventahood range hoods, countertops, plumbing fixtures, cabinet hardware and accessories, lighting fixtures, hardwood/tile, rugs, window treatments, furniture, decor.   VISIT LOUISA JANE WEBSITE

 
 

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Chair #2 - Rozanne (Rose) Hubbard, Local Artist

Rose.jpg

Midwest native, Rozanne (Rose) Hubbard, has been drawing, painting and creating art for over 40 years. She currently resides in central Illinois and works from her studio located at the Jefferson Street Studio and Gallery building in Morton, Illinois.  Her art career began in graphic design before turning to fine arts in the early eighties.  

Hubbard's art has been featured in numerous solo and group exhibitions and her work is held in private and public collections throughout the United States and Canada.

"I am a landscape painter but the land, per se, is not the focus of my art. My inspiration derives instead from an area just above the land; that beautiful, mysterious line where the earth meets the sky, where the two seem to melt together into a gauzy mist.  It is this evocative area that drives the desire to reach for my brushes.

Experimenting in various mediums over the years has led me to work almost exclusively in oils today.   My substrates can vary from linen, wood, Mylar or even copper but I have found the blending qualities of oil paint to be the most conducive in capturing the ethereal moods I observe in nature.”  

Rozanne Hubbard is represented by Edgewood Orchard Galleries in Fish, Creek, Wisconsin, The Jefferson Street Studio & Gallery, in Morton, Illinois, and Exhibit A Gallery in Peoria Heights, Illinois.  VISIT ROZANNE HUBBARD'S WEBSITE

Rozanne's painting studio, along with the studio of Jefferson Street Gallery owner & artist, Kelly Scarfe, are located in the beautiful Jefferson Street Studio and Gallery building at 206 W. Jefferson St., Morton, Illinois.  The gallery displays the works of 14 artists featuring several styles of painting, pottery, photography & jewelry.  They have something for everyone!  And...Fantastic one-of-a-kind gift ideas!  VISIT JEFFERSON STREET GALLERY AND STUDIO

"Midnight Glimmer" - Acrylic on Adirondack-style chair - by landscape painter Rozanne Hubbard.  Both the front and the back of the chair are painted with a similar scene.

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Chair #3 - Bethel Lutheran School

Painted by Mary Kate Muniz as her 8th grade
"Making a Difference" project

Screen Shot 2018-08-28 at 10.55.25 AM.png

Mary Kate Muniz is an 8th grader at Bethel Lutheran School in Morton. As part of the 8th grade school year, each student is asked to complete a “Making a Difference” project in the community. In her free time, Mary Kate likes to draw and took up the challenge to paint a chair in support of the Morton Community Foundation’s big event. Bethel school, like so many other organizations, has been a past recipient of grants offered by the foundation. 

Mary Kate wants to return the favor and further help others in the community through the foundation. With support and guidance from local artist Heidi Wolfe-Warner, Mary Kate designed and painted this blue ombre chair and titled it with one of her favorite phrases of “Enjoy the little things.” She hopes someone is able to enjoy the little things while making a big difference for our community as they relax in this chair.

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Chair #4 - Heather & Christian Ritchie

Local Artists

 Christian (L), and Heather (R) Ritchie, of Team Ritchie

Christian (L), and Heather (R) Ritchie, of Team Ritchie

The theme of the chair: Old Timey Morton Platt Maps

1891 & 1910 Tazewell County Platt (plot) map books provided by Mary Lynn at the Morton Public Library, were the inspiration for our chair. Mrs. Lynn, the Library's Historian, heartily encouraged us to use them. The chair features the downtown area on the back slats, with the surrounding rural plots covering the slats on the seat. A fun, old timey hand points to the downtown area, reminding you where you are. Many street names have changed from those on the maps, but the layout is still original. On both maps, many founding Morton family names can be discovered.  

Thanks to Miller Paint Shop for donating the timeless pumpkin orange paint and water-based urethane clear coat that will protect the chair and its printed maps indoors.

The map artwork was created by Heather, printed with a Canon inkjet printer, and trimmed and assembled by Christian.

Following are two possible stories about how Team Ritchie came to designing a chair for the Chair-ity Auction:

1)  The inception of Team Ritchie came about in 1994, when Christian and Heather met in Drawing 101 at SIU Carbondale while they were still teenagers. Despite their college shenanigans and all-nighters to finish projects, they graduated with matching degrees from the College of Art and Design in 1998. After college they decided to give Team Ritchie permanence and married in May of 1999. Their careers took off in Southern California where they forged ahead in media publication and Barbie design, respectively. After some years, tarnish fell on the glamorous life of sunshine and ocean spray in Los Angeles and they decided to return to central Illinois. Their new career paths involved earth-moving equipment, meat packaging/marketing and team expansion as their family grew. 

Together they have worked on an assortment of projects including photography, T-shirts, graphic designs of all sorts, school projects, Halloween costumes, birthday parties, macarons and now, adirondack chairs. They try to foster an environment of love, faith and creativity in the home, as well. When they are not busy with new projects, they love to spend their time cooking, eating, watching Jeopardy!, traveling and going on adventures with their two children, Stella and Iris.

---or---

2)  Christian and Heather Ritchie have been friends with Scott Witzig for years, and he asked them to decorate a chair, so they did.

 
 

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Chair #05 - Morton Public Library

Painted by MPL Staff Member and Artist
Susan Kelso

 Susan K. Kelso

Susan K. Kelso

About the painter of the Morton Public Library chair, Susan Kelso... Since joining the library staff in 2017, Susan has brought her crafty skills to summer reading decorations and our outstanding escape room. She also brings her decorating and design skills to her church’s VBS décor as well. Susan has always enjoyed making, creating and crafting things. Her work ethic is inspired but her pastor’s charge that something worth doing is worth doing with excellence. Based on her past successes helping with library décor and attention to detail, Susan was asked to paint the Library’s chair for the MCF fundraiser. The chair is based on a book design and some of the books on the chair are library staff favorites and others are classics and some represent the variety of genres available. Susan lives in Morton with her husband Scott and is the proud mom of Jennifer Kelso and Elizabeth Peterson and became a grandma this year to Amara.

 
 

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Chair #6 - Mary Spahr, Local Artist

Artist, Mary Spahr, in her studio.

Identified as having natural art ability by elementary school teachers, Mary Spahr continued to pursue art throughout her youth and into adulthood realizing it brought her much joy. She has employed her gift of art on and off in her work life, and continuously in her personal life. She first worked as a graphic designer, and then earned a degree in education from Bradley University with a fine art endorsement, certifying her to teach art in Illinois. This gave her the opportunity to work in most mediums. Embracing them all, she is always enthused to take on any creative project. In addition to graphics and fine art, she has a passion for the beauty found in architecture and is an advocate for preserving the historical significance and art forms of buildings. This motivated her to study interior design at Illinois State University, and take classes at Campbell Center for Historic Preservation, then use the knowledge she gained in pursuits toward this cause. Mary has a private art studio in Morton, which she mainly uses for her own enjoyment, but occasionally takes commissions from friends.

Mary designed her chair for function and comfort, with a modern white, gray and black color scheme to compliment current home trends. The swiveling casters make the heavy chair easy to move within a room or to and from other rooms, and the hand-sewn head and arm cushion covers are made of Sunbrella fabric with Velcro closures so they can be easily removed for washing. A geometric paint design was chosen in keeping with the modern theme of the chair.

 
 

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Chair #7 - Meghan Darcy, Local Artist

Meghan Darcy, Artist

Meghan Darcy is beginning her freshman year at Indiana Wesleyan University this fall.  She is double majoring in Digital Media Design and Illustration and plans to use her passion for art in a career in digital art/animation after graduation.  Meghan enjoys working with a wide variety of more traditional art media including pencil, colored pencil, chalk, watercolor, acrylic and oil paints, and pottery.  However, she has also developed an interest in special effects make-up in the past several years. During the 2017-18 school year, she created the special effects make-up for both the Morton High School fall play and spring musical.  

During her high school career, Meghan's art has been entered into various local art competitions.  At the 2017 Morton Pumpkin Festival Art Show, two of Meghan's pieces of art earned Best in Show and first place, in the junior division.  She won an honorable mention in the 2017 Mid Illini Conference Art Show.  Other pieces of her artwork have been selected for display in previous years' Mid Illini Conference Art Shows and the Congressional Art Competition hosted by Representative Ray LaHood.  

Meghan was honored to be asked to paint a chair for the Morton Community Foundation's Chair-ity Auction.  It was a fun way to use her passion for art to give back to her community.  Painting a piece of furniture was a new test of her abilities, which she found she greatly enjoyed.  Coming up with a theme for her chair was both exciting and challenging, but her vision came to life throughout the process.  Her chair was designed to imitate a cartoonish style, as if the three-dimensional chair were actually a two-dimensional illustration.  The creation process certainly came with some unique challenges but has resulted in a whimsical piece to be enjoyed by the young and the young-at-heart.

 
 

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Chair #8 - Alltrust Financial Management

Painted by Dorothy Ewald, Local Artist

Artist, Dorothy Ewald

Dorothy graciously volunteered to paint the chair for her sister-in-law Melissa Arbisi and the rest of the team at Alltrust Financial Management.  The theme of the chair is “Helping Grow Your Financial Security”, which the Alltrust team has been doing for their valued clients for over 35 years.  Alltrust is proud to be a Morton based business and an Annual Support Partner of the Morton Community Foundation.

About the Artist:  "I graduated with a degree in art from Illinois State University. I live in Peoria and have worked as a graphic artist at Ty-Comp, a company I have owned for over 30 years. I also enjoy doing sketches and paintings, and working in my garden (which is pictured with the chair)."

 
 
 

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Chair # 09 Morgan Elser, Local Artist

Morgan Elser

Morgan Elser is the artist who created the beautiful Giving Tree Sculpture, commissioned by donors to the Morton Community Foundation, as a way to recognize individuals who have given to the Foundation at a certain level over the years.  "The Giving Tree" sculpture, by Morgan Elser, is located at the corner of 1st and Jefferson Streets in Morton, IL.

Morgan's donation to the MCF's Chair-ity Auction is called "Wing-Chair", a play on words.  Everyone who sits in the chair instantly becomes a little "Angel."  

Working on numerous projects concurrently, I find my inspiration in the world around me as well as from my own life.  The purpose behind my Art is to evoke emotion from the viewer.  To make one laugh, to sigh, to shed a tear, to gasp or laugh out loud, seeing something unexpected in my Art.  To open the viewer's heart or mind.  Perhaps seeing life a little differently, to improve their corner of the world or to understand life on a new level.  Working in many mediums, I strive to share the ability to help save a bit of the earth, to recycle and to create Art from earth's bounty.

Have you ever had a dream of that perfect sculpture for your home or business?  Think of me when your dreams need to be made into the reality of Sculpture.  From tabletop to monumental, and in most any medium, I can create your sculpture.  The following scripture is one that really speaks to my heart.  It comes from Exodus 31:1-5...

Then the Lord said to Moses, “See, I have chosen Bezalel son of Uri, the son of Hur, of the tribe of Judah, and I have filled him with the Spirit of God, with wisdom, with understanding, with knowledge and with all kinds of skills— to make artistic designs for work in gold, silver and bronze, to cut and set stones, to work in wood, and to engage in all kinds of crafts.

 
 
 

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Chair #10 - Gold’s Gym, Morton

Designed by Brad Grimm and Todd Grimm (Gold’s Gym Owner)
Painted by Brad Grimm, of Brad Grimm Automotive & Custom Paints

Brad Grimm

Two separate businesses were originally asked to paint and donate chairs for the Morton Community Foundation's Big Event 2018 - Mahalo Luau Chair-ity Auction... Gold's Gym, and Brad Grimm Automotive and Custom Paints.  These two businesses are owned by brothers, Todd Grimm and Brad Grimm.  The two brothers began to collaborate on chair design, and eventually asked the MCF if it would be ok if their two chairs would be painted and sold as a pair.  Scott Witzig, Executive Director of the Morton Community Foundation enthusiastically agreed to having a matching pair of chairs for the Chair-ity Auction.  Todd and Brad continued to discuss design ideas and eventually came up with something that Brad would paint and donated in behalf of both businesses.  

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Chair #11 - Morton High School Girl’s Basketball

Painted by IHSA Hall of Fame Coach, Bob Becker

SIGNED BY PLAYERS OF ALL 3 MHS GIRLS BASKETBALL STATE CHAMPIONSHIP TEAMS…2015, 2016, 2017

 IHSA Hall of Fame Coach, Bob Becker

IHSA Hall of Fame Coach, Bob Becker

Coach Becker will begin his 20th season as head coach of Morton Potter girls’ basketball.  Building a culture stressing positive attitudes and strong work ethic the Potters have developed into an area and state perennial power.  Coach was inducted to the IBCA hall of fame last year and has a career varsity record of 446-146 all at Morton.  His teams have earned 10 Mid-Illini Conference titles.  In the Post season his teams have won 12 regional and six sectional championships.  Becker’s Potters have advanced to Redbird Arena five times finishing fourth in 2007 and 2013 and winning state championships in 2015, 2016, and 2017.  Coach and his wife of 25 years, Evelyn, have three children, Bobby 20, Josi 18, and Maddy 17. 

Coach Becker’s chair is a special tribute to the 22 players and 5 coaches who all worked together to earn three consecutive state championships.  We are thankful for Potters from the past who helped to lay a foundation for the successes of these three special teams.  Each new Potter team is grateful and proud of our tradition of excellence while forging ahead to leave their own legacy on Potter basketball.  Painting this chair was a labor of love for these players and coaches.  The championship teams from 2015, 2016, and 2017 had that ever elusive “IT”.  Sportswriter and Author Dave Kindred has documented each of these dream come true seasons in “Mighty in Heart”, “True Grit”, and “The Unbelievables” which chronicle each season respectively.  A copy of each of these 3 books is included for the winning bidder of this chair.

We will never forget the emotions and feelings we shared winning these state titles together.  It’s an honor to paint this chair to support the Morton Community Foundation Chair-ity Auction, while also saying thank you for the memories to our State Champions!

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Chair #12 - Morton Chamber of Commerce

Painted by Cindy Villa, Local Artist

Cindy Villa, a Mortonite for over 34 years, has had a love for art and the Arts from a very young age.

The Morton Chamber of Commerce, organizer of the annual Morton Pumpkin Festival, asked Cindy Villa to paint a chair as their entry in the Morton Community Foundation's Chair-ity Auction.  Of course, they asked her to carry out a pumpkin themed chair design.

About the Artist:  As a child designing clothes for her paper dolls and craft projects with what was on hand, stifled at times, but more so encouraged, she found an enormous universe of artistic possibilities in the life ahead of her.  Through years of classes in Decorative Painting and Faux Finishing, then teaching at many area shops and her home studio, her passion for painting continued.  Many local people would find her at local craft shows and her very successful 10 years of the “Holiday House” Christmas Show in her home. She designed and published Decorative Painting pattern designs for many years.  “I’m as comfortable with a paintbrush in my hand, as a pencil”. Cindy has also been a kitchen & bath designer and worked many years as a faux finisher.

She was privileged, through the Society of Decorative Painters, to have her Christmas Ornaments in the White House, Vice-President’s home, the Smithsonian Institute, the Library of Congress, and given in a wreath to weatherman Willard Scott, and also a lavender porcelain Easter Egg presented to First Lady Barbara Bush.

 She was invited to the White House for the first party of the Christmas season, when her ornament was on the Official White House Tree in 2004 and met First Lady Laura Bush. “We had the whole run of the second floor – it was amazing! The lavish decorations were beyond real!! I remember calling my dad and saying – ‘I’m having lunch at the White House!!’  There really is a White House Turkey with a red bow, but it was rather small – the lamb chops won my vote, as well as White House Egg Nog which is delish!”

“I have such a respect for other artists of any medium, as I know what goes into a creation…much thought, vision, excitement at the possible outcome, planning and material preparation, the actual work, often setbacks, re-thinking, changes, completion of the artwork, then finishing coat after coat, and final pleasure at seeing the outcome!”

“I also have a love of painting pumpkins and am very honored to paint the Chamber’s chair for this auction and hope it keeps Morton pumpkins in the heart of the new owner year-round!”

 
 

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Chair #13 - Morton Park District

Painted by “The Painted Ladies” of the Morton Paint Club

 
 

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Chair #14 - Chris Rajkumar, Local Artist

Chris Rajkumar

Chris Rajkumar and his wife Supriya have been Morton residents since 1995. Both their kids, Jeff and Jess, were born in Peoria and went through the Morton school system. Chris works at Caterpillar as an engineer. He is a self-taught hobby artist who primarily paints in oils and acrylics. He loves doing landscapes with a small human element attached. One of his paintings placed first at the 2017 Morton Art Show. His paintings are usually based on photos he takes of local or mountain landscapes. The idea behind the chair that Chris painted depicts greenery, which signifies symbolic new beginnings which the Morton Community Foundation bestows to many deserving folks.

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Chair #15 - Lyle Cruse, Local Artist

Lyle Cruse, Artist

Lyle Cruse is a local artist who loves mixing cultural icons and youthful wonderment into all of his creations. He won the Morton Art Show’s People’s Choice Award five years in a row. Lyle previously worked making movie posters, commercials, and memorabilia for Disney, Warner Brothers, and Universal Studios. He now works as the Creative Team Lead at Samaritan Ministries in Peoria. This chair was inspired by the 1960’s Avengers comics.  Lyle said, “I love what our culture does with super heroes. Each person is empowered with unique gifts and they need to learn how to work together for the common good. 1 Corinthians 12:7”.

You can learn more about Lyle, and see more of Lyle’s work on his website LYLE STYLE.

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Chair #16 - Jefferson Street Studio & Gallery

Painted by Owner & Artist
Kelly Scarfe 

 Jefferson Street Studio and Gallery, 206 Jefferson Street

Jefferson Street Studio and Gallery, 206 Jefferson Street

Kelly Scarfe, Artist

Kelly was born in Rockford, Illinois and spent her youth in Morton, Illinois. After receiving  her BFA from Southeast Missouri State University she moved between Memphis, Washington D.C., San Francisco, Denver and Salt Lake City until this wanderer found her way back home. She is once again living and making art in her small central Illinois town.  Kelly is the current owner of The Jefferson Street Studio & Gallery in which she purchased from fellow artist Rose Hubbard. She is happy to be a able to continue to  share local fine art with the central Illinois community and call the wonderful artists bungalow her creative home.

Experimenting with abstract and nonrepresentational pieces Kelly is deeply interested in the effects of color, texture and the emotional response to strong composition and design. By mixing bold color, geometric and organic shapes and textures Kelly hopes to create art that evokes emotion while telling a visually exciting story.

In creating her “Chair for Charity” Kelly’s inspiration was the chair and the memories it evoked. Waves and surf, sunshine and palm trees. Sitting in a chair much like the one she was asked to paint in one of her favorite spots, the beach. Using her love for the abstract she wanted to recall the sun soaked days, weathered wood, blue skies and the movement of the surf on the surface of the chair. 

 
 

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Chair #17 - Morton High School Band 

Painted by Connie Andrews, Local Artist

A note from Artist, Connie Andrews: I was honored to be asked to paint a chair to represent the Morton High School Marching Band. My daughter, who is a senior this year, plays alto saxophone. It has taught her to be a better musician for certain, but the other benefits from the program, such as discipline, respect, and a hard work ethic, combine to make this a unique experience. This program has been such a positive force in our lives. I have worked with the props team for the last 4 years and have very much enjoyed being part of the band family.

Connie Andrews, Artist

About the Chair: At the end of every performance, the band stands in a circle, all 180 of them at this point, with the staff in the middle. They  put their arms around each other, swaying in rhythm to the song, Fix You by Cold Play. It is one of the most touching things I have ever seen. I wanted to convey that feeling somehow, so I incorporated a few sections of the music with lyrics onto the chair. The musician isn’t any one person in particular. My aim was to make this a piece of furniture that is timeless, representing the group as a whole. 

In 2016, Connie was honored to be nominated as a finalist for Best Visual Artist in Peoria.   Also in 2016, she   was one of 5 artists, out of over 160, chosen for the 1st ArtPop competition here in Peoria that awards a year long spot on a billboard.   Another recent project in Iowa, which has gained national attention from Smithsonian Magazine and other media, is a larger than life sculpture she was chosen to paint, inspired by the American Gothic painting of a farmer and his daughter, by Grant Wood. She has been the recipient of numerous awards for her heartfelt, meaningful paintings and sculptures. Connie’s art is in a growing number of homes and business around the United States and Germany.

Currently, she teaches oil painting at the Morton Park District every week and has drawing and sculpture classes upcoming at her studio in Peoria.

Her public studio is at the Studios on Sheridan in Peoria.  Please visit Connie’s studio, or website to see more of her art, sign up for her newsletter, find locations of public art and more. www.connieandrews.com        309-231-7509

 
 

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Chair #18 - Lincoln Elementary School

Painted by Linda Emlin, Local Artist

Linda Emlin, Artist

Linda Emlen was asked to volunteer to paint a chair for Lincoln school. Mom to second grader Zofia, became inspired by the “ROAR” slips given out to students caught for good behavior. The idea for whimsical school supply was born. Having never painted on furniture before proved to be challenging. After several revisions and idea changes, the final details had to be completed, a due date imminent, there would be no more metamorphosis. This chair is painted using indoor/outdoor paint of various brands and colors, also chalk paint, and paint markers, finished with slight distressing and sealed with Helmsman Indoor/outdoor spar urethane in clear gloss.

About the Artist:
I love to play with colors and textures exploring different mediums. Currently my paintings reflect ocean and space being so vast and mystifying, I am drawn to the ebb and flow of the universe. My work can be seen at the Jefferson Street Gallery.

Following are some examples of other work from my portfolio. You may click on them to enlarge to full size.

 
 

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 Chair #19 - Kuhl Insurance

Painted by Kari (Kuhl) Zern, Local Artist

Kari (Kuhl) Zern, Artist

Art History:  I would consider myself an art hobbiest.  I do not have an art degree, but I have always enjoyed the arts and the creative process.  As a child in the late 70s I participated in and won the Pumpkin Decorating Contest as well as the window decorating contest.  I also recall spending hours practicing drawing the perfect pumpkin to enter the libraries art contest…. So its not surprising that today at age 51 I am still painting pumpkins!!  

Chair Background: In 2015, I first came up with my collage idea as an art project for my son’s eighth grade class at Blessed Sacrament.  I was teaching art there at the time and I was asked to create and assist the students in making an item to be auctioned at their annual fundraiser.  That origional, student version, was purchased by Gordan and Jean Ann Honegger, and currently is on display at MCB in Morton I believe.  I don’t recall exactly how much money was raised, but it was a lot more than I ever thought.

After getting such positive reaction to the piece, in 2016 I decided to create my own version on “What We Love About Morton” so that I could reproduce it.  This original is a whimsical mixed-media piece, made with paper and paints.  Much of the inspiration came from my childhood memories of our town, as well as, current local favorites.  After it was completed, local photographer, Tammy Martin, assisted me in taking a photo of my image so that I could reproduce it into prints, etc.

So, the chair has a version of my original collage, plus some added details to better fit the chair.  Two new additions were the pile of pumpkins which represents how Libby’s used to create a mountain of the pumpkins outside their building years ago.  I also added my home church Blessed Sacrament with its unique circular architecture, as well as, a hidden pumpkin pin.  I chose black as the background, to keep the chair’s look similar to my canvas.  I feel like this also serves to pop the collage details best.  Epoxy was used to cover the collage parts of the chair for protection.  

The chair is recommended for indoor or sun protected outdoor use, although it does have a UV varnish applied.

 
 

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Chair #20 - Morton Youth Baseball (MYBA) 

Painted by Dr. Matt Nannie

Dr Nanny with his wife, Kathleen, and his son, Lincoln…. plus the dogs, Khaleesi left Zena right..

Taking on challenges is one of Dr. Matt Nannie’s passions. Although not an artist, he couldn’t help but say yes when asked to paint a chair for the MYBA. Dr. Matt is a chiropractor at Health Solutions of Morton and has been treating patients for four years. As a husband and father, Dr. Matt loves seeing whole families come into the office. With this passion, in fall 2014, Dr. Matt had the opportunity to accept another challenge and establish a Chiropractic clinic with a group of colleagues in India. During his time there, he and his colleagues treated thousands of patients ranging from infants to seniors.

When he’s not at Health Solutions, Dr. Matt enjoys weight-training, biking, boating, hosting health workshops and spending time outdoors with his wife and young son. As he writes this he anxiously awaits the arrival of his second son.

The MYBA is an affiliate of the Morton Park District. It’s first by-laws were written in 1973. It serves close to 550 kids in the Morton area. The Executive board is comprised of 15 members while there are numerous associate directors and countless volunteers to run the park. MYBA spends an average of $453 per player involved with the program. In house players only pay around $115 for the program while most travel players pay around $400. Fundraising and volunteers are essential in maintaining our beautiful park. MYBA is grateful for its relationship with the Foundation. We were beyond excited when Dr. Matt Nannie, with Health Solutions, volunteered to be our artist for the Charity event.

 
 

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Chair #21 - Lettie Brown Elementary School 

Painted by Sondra Dole, Artist

Sondra Dole, Artist

Sondra Dole is a long time craft and hobby artist. Her interests range from sewing and quilting, jewelry making, graphic design, and painting with acrylics, to just about anything she is inspired to try. Sondra and her husband Joe lived in Morton for 14 years and have resided in Groveland for the past 10 years. They have three grown sons and 2 grandchildren. Sondra is the building technologist at Lettie Brown Elementary, and has worked there for 17 years. She produces the monthly Brown newsletter and has painted and created numerous things for and around the school. 

The design for this chair was inspired by two things-a love of the beach and sitting on the front porch of their home in Groveland enjoying the happenings in the neighborhood. She wanted something that would encourage others to sit back and relax for a short while in our busy world.

 
 

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Chair #21 - Morton Orchestra 

By Leah Getz, Local Artist

 Leah Getz, Artist

Leah Getz, Artist

Ever since Leah was old enough to hold a crayon or play a note on the piano, she has been creating. Leah is an artist at heart. In order to focus on a speaker, she has to be drawing. To truly appreciate an experience, she writes a rhyme or song. Over the years Leah has covered the driveway with chalk-art, painted old guitars, detailed all of her instrument cases, decorated cupcakes, doodled on countless notebook pages, etc. . . . .

In high school, Leah took several art classes which helped define her craft. Although composing and performing music are her main passion, drawing / painting will always be her way to focus and relax. For Leah, the best part of creating art is gifting it to others. So, this opportunity to paint a chair was an enjoyable project. She painted the chair on the porch as she watched the sunsets. Hopefully someone can sit in this chair and do likewise!

Below are some examples of Leah’s artwork…

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Chair #23 - Mikki Grant, Local Artist 

Mikki Grant, Artist

Mikki Grant was raised in Morton and is a self-taught artist that has had a passion for painting, drawing and other forms of creativity since she was in elementary school.   She has exhibited her work at several venues and has entered and won awards in the Morton Pumpkin Festival Art Show.   Mikki enjoys art as a hobby and likes creating art for her own home and for family and friends.  She has been married to her husband, Ed for 40 years and they are looking forward to being first time grandparents in January.  Their son, Nick and daughter-in-law, Beth (Forden) live in Ft. Collins, Colorado.

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Chair #24 - Morton High School Art Club

This chair was completed by students of Morton High School's Art Club: Theresa Frost (senior), Rachel Henderson (sophomore), Lainey Jensen (freshman) and Mariah Speerly (freshman). Morton's Art Club has only been around for the last year, but it has been a great experience for students to come together and create art with friends and peers. Projects Art Club has helped create are parts of the "M" mural in the midway at the high school, as well as the paintings on the bathroom stalls. We look forward to creating even more art within the high school and community in the years to come. 

 
 

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Chair #25 - Jefferson Elementary School

Painted by: Melissa Clementz; Accessories by: Nicole Friend

Left: Nicole Friend (Accessories); Right: Melissa Clementz (Chair)

Chair painted by Melissa Clementz, current Patriot parent, Jefferson staff member and Patriot alum. Accessories created by Nicole Friend, Patriot parent and Avid PTO member.

2018 marks Jefferson’s 90th year. We are proud to have such a long history and tradition in our community. Whether it is as a student, staff member, or simply a Pumpkin Festival goer, the entire town of Morton is a part of our school. Once a Patriot Always a Patriot!

Jefferson School, is a 2018 recipient of a grant from the Morton Community Foundation. The monies received from this grant have been used to purchase new playground equipment for our community playground.  

Our goal for our chair was to create a chair that was a true representation of Jefferson… patriotic, warm, and inviting.

 
 
 

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Chair #26 - Morton Community Bank

It’s ‘Time’ to Relax in this one of a kind outdoor chair!  This chair was designed by your friendly hometown Morton Community Bank (www.hometownbanks.com) with 40 Central Illinois locations to service your financial needs, including three Morton locations.  It was painted in the signature MCB colors of dark brown and white and features the MCB logo, the ‘Clock Tower’…symbolizing the phrase, We have ‘time’ for you!

Completing this chair was a ‘community’ effort.  From the base painting done by MCB employee Mark DeSantis, to the custom cushion material and hand-painted clock tower logo by artist and retired MCB employee, Dawn Maloney, to the hand-made chair cushion by Morton’s Nicole Friend, we are pleased to be able to participate in this unique fundraiser to benefit the Morton Community Foundation.   MCB also supports the foundation as an Annual Support Partner.

Morton Community Bank has also been a promoter of local art for the past five years.Our ‘Time Gallery’ is located on the second floor of our Clock Tower Building in the Levee District in East Peoria.Local artists show their work in two month rotations throughout the year at the ‘Time Gallery’.Interested artists may contact Gallery Coordinator, Dawn Maloney for show scheduling opportunities at maloney.dawn@gmail.com. We are currently working on the summer, 2019 schedule. Artist Dawn Maloney also maintains a permanent display of artwork at Main Gallery 404 in Bloomington.Her website is dawnmaloney.com.

 
 

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Chair #27 - MJHS Art Club 

Morton Junior High Art Club collaborated in painting this chair as Vincent Van Gogh's painting, Starry Night. We started with a coat of blue and a few rough sketches with chalk. Then we mixed various yellows, blues, and greens in thick paint as Vincent Van Gogh would have done, following the directional paint strokes he is famous for doing. We are a big group at the MJHS Art Club, so we took turns working in groups of 3-4. We greatly enjoyed it and hope you love our chair as much as we do!  - Brittany DuPont, MJHS Art Teacher

 
 

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Chair #28 - Grundy Elementary School 

Painted by Melissa Barnhill, Local Artist

Melissa Barnhill, Artist

Melissa Barnhill is a mom from right here in Morton! She lives here with her husband Chris and their three children Chris, Samantha, and Katy. 

All three kids went to Grundy Elementary- she said it is a wonderful school where the staff makes you feel like family. Melissa currently designs jewelry for Kevin Kelly Jewelers; where she has followed her passions for jewelry for more than 20 years. There she meets with guest to discuss the piece they would like to create. After she gathers their ideas, stories, and necessities to create the perfect item ideas are rendered up for a final review with the client before the item is completed.

Kevin Kelly Jewelers is a full service jewelry shop located at 7501 N. University in Peoria. They specialize in jewelry repair, restoration, and custom work. All work is done on-site right there at the shop from start to finish. Melissa's design work has placed in national design competitions. Most recently she was recognized in a national trade magazine by the largest jewelry manufacturer in the United States. While her love of jewelry art design run far - she loves the small hometown living here in Morton being involved with the Morton schools, Girl Scouts & MBN (Morton Business Network). Jewelry is her favorite medium for art since it is wearable!! She says the best part of her job is the joy on the recipients faces when they open their piece.

 
 
 

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Chair #29 - Morton Fine Arts 

Painted by Julie Wood, Artist

Brian & Julie Wood

Julie Wood is an amateur artist/ continuing art student from Dunlap, IL. She enjoys working in charcoal, pencil, acrylic, oil, and chalk. She obtained an Associate degree in Art from ICC in 2005, and continues her education as time (and family life) allow. She's a wife to Good Shepherd Defense and Training owner Brian Wood, and a mother to their three children, Arabella, Samara, and Isaiah.

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Chair #30 - Heart of Morton 

Painted by Taylor Wells

Taylor Wells, Artist

25-year-old Taylor Wells lives with his parents in Groveland, IL. He attended Morton High School and completed the Life Academy program in 2015. Since graduation, he joined the Heart of Morton program which he attends weekly. He also works part time at the Holiday Inn Express in Morton.

An affable young man, Taylor enjoys hanging out with his Heart of Morton friends and participating in the various activities with his friends. As his chair design demonstrates, he is a talented artist whose favorite subject is Disney and other animated characters.  These subjects have inspired Taylor to create greeting cards and other types of correspondence that he shares with family and friends. This is Taylor’s first public display of his artwork.  He hopes that this effort will bring new challenges and opportunities for other projects in the community.

His usual medium is pencil/pen and paper, so this project introduced a new challenge with the paint and the surface. The result is a solid affirmation of the scope of his artistic skills. Taylor is honored to be chosen to do an entry to support the MCF, which has given so much support to the extended Morton community.

HOM Logo.jpg

Heart of Morton began in January, 2010 as a group of parents who had children with special needs in District 709. We knew each other through organizations like the Down Syndrome Association, Special Olympics, The Penguin Project, church, schools and the Morton community at large. The initial goal was to provide information on resources that were available (i.e. Social Security Administration) and steps to take in planning care for our young adults (i.e., guardianship, estate & trust planning).  We also recognized that the continuing trend towards “transfer of services” from state support to local responsibility would require initiative by parents to provide for the post high school lives of our young adults.

With that realization, we took steps to organize which included establishing a board of directors, seek incorporation, and obtain IRS NFP status. We were granted NFP status in 2013. 

Our mission is to serve as an incubator for future growth of our participants after they have left school at age 22. We wanted to act independently of any government financial support so we could develop the program which best suited the needs as we identified them. We began with the concept of a day program which we launched in February, 2012. The purpose is to build on life skills developed in the Morton High School program such as cooking and preparing meals, shopping, planning events and performing the necessary tasks to conduct the event. We’ve done this with the generous outpouring of support from the Community United Church of Christ, to which we are very grateful.  Heart of Morton is now prepared to make the next step to expand the number of days of the program and to expand on the core concept.

With the H.O.M.E. Project (Heart of Morton Embroidery), we will build on the cross section of skills our participants developed during high school at the LIFE Academy. This will be an addition to the current day program activities. These skills will include technical machine operation, production sequencing, order fulfillment, solicitation and sales promotion in the community. As there are a variety of skills within our participants, each will be able to bring those talents to the task. Our ultimate goal is to provide advancement opportunities for our young adults to move out of the H.O.M.E. environment and on to other meaningful employment opportunities within the general Morton business community and demonstrate the valuable skills our young adults can bring to a variety of business environments

 
 Taylor Wells, Artist

Taylor Wells, Artist

 

Chair #31 - MHS Interact Club