(Leitchfield, KY) - Several Lawler 4th graders have been part of an exciting project that may soon be on display at the annual Governor’s Derby Breakfast and Celebration. A local newspaper article recently featured an invitation from the Kentucky Arts Council for schools to paint canvas tablecloths for the annual event. After reading it, teacher Sandy Salsman knew she wanted Lawler students to be part of the honor.
Each table on the Old State Capitol grounds will be fitted with a horse head and tail, and the painted canvases, or “Derby blankets,” are to be draped across to complete the look. This is the fourth year schools have been invited to participate in the celebration.
An art lover herself, Salsman likes to “incorporate it when I can” into the lessons she teaches. For this one, she was able to incorporate social studies, particularly Kentucky history, art and a major dose of school pride.
Salsman and a group of students began their work right after spring break, with seven of them staying the course, start to finish. Each region of the state, along with its best-known landmarks and natural wonders now brightens “An Adventurous Road Trip Across Kentucky”. From Eastern Coalfields to Western Farmlands, the colorful canvas features Churchill Downs, the State Capitol, Corvette Museum, even Lawler Elementary front and center.
Once finished, the canvas will take an “adventurous road trip” of its own. “I have to send it to Frankfort and hopefully ours is chosen,” she said.
Spanning landmarks and regions of the Commonwealth, students put the finishing touches on their Derby blanket. Now comes the really hard part – waiting - to hear if their masterpiece will appear on a table at the Governor’s Derby Celebration.