TURNER – Leavitt Area High School’s entire first floor will be turned into a giant art gallery Thursday, March 27, during the 9th annual Arts Gala when more than 300 art students will display their work or perform.

“No one (public school) does an art show of this magnitude in the state,” said Ronnie Decker, one of three full-time art teachers at the school.

Musical performances, a pottery throw-down, street artists, a poetry performance by Poetry Out Loud state champion Kate McKeown and a house of cards that does not fall apart will be scattered among hundreds of visual art displays.

Certain display spots are highly coveted. For example, senior Toby Rose had his eye on particular wall space ever since his freshman year. Upperclassmen get first pick and grabbed it before Rose got his chance. “Now that I’m a senior, I get it,” said Rose, who will showcase ceramics, photographs and a few drawings.

Nine professional artists spent three days at the school working with students. Artists ranging from mimes and puppeteers to fiddlers and storytellers are invited each year to share the ins and outs of their craft. Some artists come back year after year and others are newcomers, said Decker.

Funds given by the Leavitt Trustees help pay to bring in professionals. “The first year we had two visiting artists,” said Decker. Eight years later, nine artists were welcomed.

The Arts Gala will run from 6 to 9 p.m. All exhibits and performances are open to the public.

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