WILMINGTON - An innovative fundraiser to benefit the Wilmington Youth Program is putting the area's creative resources to good use.
"Chairs of Wilmington" features several Adirondack-style chairs, each hand-painted with imagery representative of the town and its surroundings.
Rarilee Conway, a board member for the Wilmington Youth Program, said inspiration for the project came from similar artistic exhibits in New Hampshire and Vermont where artists painted statues of cows and displayed them outdoors on sidewalks and streetcorners.
"We decided to do chairs because that seemed kind of appropriate for us," Conway said.
"We have 17 chairs from 15 different artists," she explained, "and they're all local people who've donated their time."
The chairs will be auctioned as a fundraiser for the many Wilmington Youth activities, such as the Youth Center, skateboard park, and new bicycle dirt jump park.
"We also have a program where we provide skiing free of charge for youth in Wilmington, and that's a very expensive program," said Conway.
Some Wilmington youth were even involved in painting the chairs, acting as apprentices to local artists to decorate the bold and colorful chairs.
"Each chair is unique and special," Conway said. "There are a lot of talented people around here, so they're all pretty creative."
The chairs have been on display since Memorial Day at several key businesses and organizations throughout town, each of which helped sponsor them.
Chairs can be viewed at T&T Tanning and Fitness Center, the Whiteface Business and Tourism Center, Mountain Brook Lodge, AuSable River Two Fly Shop, NBT Bank, The Flume, The Hungry Trout Fly Shop, Whiteface Mountain, Whiteface Chalet, High Peaks Health Center, Wilmington Youth Center, River Stone Wellness, Whiteface Insurance and Investments, The Little Supermarket, Mulvey's Adirondack Farm Market, and The Children's Garden.
Bids on each of the chairs start at $100, and can be placed from now until the final auction Sept. 11 at the Festival of Colors. To place a bid, leave a note at the chair's location, or contact either Meg Parker at 802-309-5447 or Conway at 524-0493.