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Sioux City Art Center seven-day fundraiser offer a mix of online and in-person events
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Sioux City Art Center seven-day fundraiser offer a mix of online and in-person events

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SIOUX CITY -- "Pure Imagination: A Week of Delights" -- a seven-day fundraising event for the Sioux City Art Center -- was designed to interpret the world through five senses, development associate Summer Amman said.

"Our fundraiser will show how the visual arts can enhance those senses," she said of the event that begins on Saturday and runs until May 7.

"Pure Imagination" -- named after the song from the 1971 movie "Willy Wonka & the Chocolate Factory" -- starts with an exploration of sight, via a silent auction, at 7 p.m. Saturday. Among the offerings up for bid were artwork, concert tickets and weekend getaways. All items may be found at Pure Imagination (

On Sunday, the sensation of touch will be examined through a hands-on experience with clay. A sculpting class will be taught at the Gilchrist Learning Center, which is adjacent to the Art Center.

Art Center members may enjoy a courtesy cup of coffee and a sweet treat during a Member Appreciation Coffee, from 7:30 to 9 a.m. Monday.

An all-day parade of flowers will occur on Wednesday as various floral displays will fill the Art Center's atrium in a program devoted to scent.

Sound, courtesy of harpist Mary Watts, will fill the Art Center from 5 to 8 p.m. Thursday.

On Friday, action moves to the Art Center's front lawn as wines, cheeses and all sorts of charcuterie will be served from 5 to 7 p.m. In addition, singer-songwriter Mike Langley will offer an outdoor concert.

Saturday concludes with an all-day event in which guests will be allowed to walk through an exhibit inspired by artist Dennis Dykema's "Comet Shower."

"As soon as guests walked through our doors, I wanted to dazzle all of our senses," development coordinator Erin Webber-Dreeszen said.

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Director Todd Behrens was just hoping to bring people back to the Art Center, which had struggled due to the pandemic. 

"We're gradually getting back to where we want to be but it will take time," he said. 

That is why "Pure Imagination" was conceived with COVID restrictions in mind, Webber-Dreeszen said.

"There are some events that are only available online, like our virtual auction," she explained. "Other events, like our Wine & Cheese Soiree, will take place outside of the Art Center."

Actual events inside of the Art Center will occur in large areas like the atrium, where social distancing is possible. Otherwise, they will be held at the Gilchrist Learning Center, where space and class sizes are limited.

Which is fine by Behrens.

"It's been a tough year for everyone," he said. "Perhaps art can bring color back into everybody's lives." 

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