With visitors soon returning to Moraine Park Beach in Highland Park, might as well spruce the place up.
The town’s park district and art center are searching for an artist to do just that by decorating two concrete bunkers on the Moraine Park Dog Beach.
“These rainwater access point structures are now just bare concrete and the two organizations are looking for ideas to make them an added feature attraction,” said Clara Tomaz, media manager of The Art Center of Highland Park, in an email.
Interested artists can submit their ideas via email to firstname.lastname@example.org by March 3. According to a press release, designs must be family-friendly but “otherwise can be proposed in any style or concept you can imagine.”
Judges from the park district and art center will select five finalists and the public will help select the winner. The final design must get approval of the Highland Park Park Board.
The winning artist will receive $250 from the Park District of Highland Park and $250 in tuition credit from The Art Center, which will also reimburse the artist’s paint.
“The Park District if Highland Park is excited to partner with The Art Center of Highland Park on this unique art project contest to beautify the North Shore Water Reclamation District structures at Moraine Park Beach,” said Casey Lawler, the district’s planning and projects supervisor, in a statement. “It is a wonderful example of how art and open space are complementary experiences.”
Moraine Park Dog Beach closed to the public four years ago when substantial rains caused portions of the ravine path to collapse.
The park district developed a plan by 2020 to rehab the path, but the Park Board punted the project until 2022, when construction on a new path and stabilization of the slope began.
As of January, a new boardwalk and other site work was complete. The path is awaiting handrails and is set to be open in the coming weeks, according to park officials.
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