The St. Edward Summer Care group. Top row, left to right: Jadin Otto, Audyn Traen, Jade Abraham, Quinn Pohlen, Wyatt Opdahl, Josh Arends, and Winston Strand. Bottom row, left to right: Brisbyn Traen, Ryker Crowley, Layla Opdahl, and William Buysse.  Tara Thooft, the St. Edward Summer Program Director, sprays a sealant on the finished kiosk paint project.  The kids put the finishing touches on their art project. They are: (clockwise from bottom left) Brisbyn Traen, Winston Strand, Quinn Pohlen and Jade Abraham.


Kids take on kiosk painting project

The kiosk at the beginning of the walking trail next to the swimming pool became a little friendlier this past week after St. Edward Summer Care Program Director Tara Thooft and 11 kids painted an inspiring logo on one side.
Previously, the north side of the kiosk had information about the walking trail, as well as community events posted under glass. The south side of the kiosk was blank.
Thooft, who will be a freshman at Winona State University this fall and will major in Art Education, has been working with kids as Summer Program Director since May 26. The program continues until Aug. 14. Each week, there is a different theme such as Mad Scientist, Under the Sea, Space, Around the World, Spy Week and much more. And there are various daily activities within the theme for the week.
This past week's kiosk project coincided with Art Education Week.
Thooft was asked if she would be interested in coming up with an idea for the kiosk. She readily agreed and then came up with the design and then had the kids ranging in ages from 5-10 paint it.
"This is a great way to let the kids engage with the community despite everything going on," said Thooft, a recent Minneota graduate. "It will also give the kids something to be really proud of that everyone can see."
The design centers around a Viking warrior with horned helmet to represent the Minneota Vikings. The Viking head is sandwiched between the letters M-I-N-N-E-O-T-A. Above is a silhouette of the upper half of 11 children to express unity and diversity. Each of the 11 kids painted a separate silhouette.
After the painting was complete last Wednesday, Thooft did a little touch-up work and then sprayed a polyurethane coating over it to preserve the work.

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