MOUNT MORRIS — Some were invited to take a peek behind the curtain at the artwork that will be up for bidding next month.
The Metal Trade Project at Mount Morris Career and Technical Education Center is going to benefit Noyes Health this year. The Bid Adieu to Diabetes Event has been put on by several organizations like Dansville Lions Club, Dansville Rotary Club, Dansville Ambulance Corp, and Dansville Moose Lodge. These combined efforts have paved the way for students from all over to express themselves and benefit the community.
The public kick-off event is May 11 at 11 a.m. in front of Star Theater. There are over 30 sculptures available to bid on at Dansville Moose Lodge on June 1 at 6 p.m. All of the money raised will go to the Noyes Diabetes Education Program.
Mount Morris CTE Executive Principal Matt Flowers said the students have a great opportunity to create art for the community.
“It is a great opportunity for students to create amazing art, and give back to the community. This program has a wonderful history of giving back,” he said. “I pop in everyday and watch them take a simple piece of metal, and turn it into a work of art. I couldn’t be more proud to watch the students grow their skills.”
Olie Olsen, Mount Morris CTE Metal Trades instructor, said his students always do a great job with the projects.
“The idea of using Noyes Hospital as the beneficiary this year is significant. When we asked the students if they knew anyone who had been affected by diabetes all the hands in the room went up,” he said. “The students get to highlight what they have done, and appreciate the fact they are doing something for someone they don’t even know. They are doing something no one else has done. This is very rewarding to them, and some go all their lives not having this feeling.”
Olsen said the students are also learning a lot more about the organizations and clubs within their communities.
Mary Sue Dehn, Noyes Health public relations director, said the hospital is very excited to be the beneficiary of the project this year.
“We are very excited to be the beneficiary of this year’s metalwork. The kids are all working hard to do real life work, and better understand how to help the community,” she said. “We are delighted to be part of that. Diabetes touches a lot of lives and impacts a lot of families. This project teaches them to care and bring their passions to the community. It shows they can create something beautiful, and it will go to benefit the community in a huge way.”
Ian Ziegler, of Warsaw, worked on Heartbeat in honor of his mother who has diabetes.
“Olsen is a good teacher. He likes to evaluate the problems in several different ways. He will always help you figure it out,” he said. “I did the heart sculpture, because my mom has diabetes. I have friends who have family that suffer from diabetes. I want to help support all the people who have it. Every person in this class has someone in their life that is affected by diabetes.”
Ziegler has a dream job of working on old muscle cars someday, but has a full-time job lined up after he graduates from school.
Tom Young, US Army Veteran and Mount Morris Adult Ed student, has K-9 in memory of K-9 Gibbs who passed away a few months ago. Deputy Ryan Swanson and Young have been friends for many years, and this touched home with him. Swanson took the passing of his partner and friend K-9 Gibbs really hard.
“This is a sculpture memorial of K-9 Gibbs that brings awareness for the sacrifice these dogs make. The K-9 is part of the family, and when they lose their life it feels like they lost a member of their family. There is a big bond made between the animal and the partner,” he said. “I grew up with Swanson and his brother. I was aware of what this meant to him. I wanted to recognize the importance of this sacrifice. Not a lot of people know the sacrifice that K-9’s make too. When you get them as a puppy they become a part of you.”
Nate Smalt, of Wayland, worked on the Horseshoe Chicken that will be up for auction.
“It is cool that all the money will go to help diabetes. I have people in my family that have it. I have always been interested in metalwork,” he said. “I plan on using that skill when I ship out in October. I am enlisted in the US Navy. It has a lot of great benefits. I plan on turning it into a career.”
Chandler Stevenson, of Wayland, worked on 3 Petal Daisy that looks like a wheel of sunflowers.
“It is a wheel of sunflowers that I put together. I like how it turned out. It wasn’t part of the plan at first, but I kept adding things to it,” he said. “I think this has been a fun experience, and I learned a lot. I like that I am giving back to the community, and helping people with diabetes.”
Rory Benklem, Mount Morris CTE Metal Trade assistant, said all of the students have done an incredible job, and have a lot more opportunities now than he did in high school. The idea of this kind of trade was in its infancy back in those days.
“I think it is wonderful they are practicing welding and enhancing their skills to learn how to make a living. I used to be the kid trying to learn the trade, and now I am the one sharing my own skills with the students,” he said. “I like sharing what I have learned over the years. You can come here with no experience, or with a ton of experience and still learn lots of life skills. We get to save metal that would be thrown in the junk and turn it into art.”
The sculptures include Fire Pit (Sam MIller, Nick Maines, Exavior Dersam, Bryce Lorenz), Heart in Hands (Makenna Read, Aiden Binns, Bronson Bennett), Chime Bells (Dakota Shafer-Burns, Tylor Mahany, Aiden Binns), Horseshoe Table (Dayton Wolcott), 3 Petal Daisy (Chandler Stevenson and Billy Youngers), Candle Stand 1 and Candle Stand 2 (Aiden Binns, Bronson Bennett, Anthony Hensley), Grapevine (Anthony Schumacher), Sunflower (Kyle Vosburgh, Chase Teed), H-D Tire Table and Bird Bath and Cardinal (Kole Andress, Ryan Magee), Tree Wine Btl, Heartbeat (Ian Ziegler), Cyl. Head Table(Trevor Mallaber, Jeremy Sadowski, Kyle Vosburgh), Horseshoe Chicken (Nate Smalt), Kiwi Bird (Braydon Reamer, Chase Teed, Billy Youngers), Guitar Frog (Braydon Reamer), Abby Road (Kyle Vosburgh), Dolphins/Waves (Lee Bookmiller), Keg Urinal (Levi Howe), Dog (Joshua Barnhart), Lily Palm (Kyle Vosburgh, Mike Gross), Knome (Shawn Dubowyk), Candle Flower (Chandler Stevenson), Rose Bush (Devin Bell, Jeremy Sadowski, Anthony Hensley), Guitar Man (Kolby Scott) and K-9 (Tom Young).