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Chalk artists, skiers to exhibit talent at festival

Caleb McBride with his award-winning entry from 2010. Photos provided (click for larger version)
August 10, 2011 - By Olivia Shumaker

Special Writer for The Review

Art comes in many forms and the Dragon on the Lake Community Festival, Aug. 26-28, 2011, will entertain and inspire crowds, promises Reggie Harrison, director of the Orion Art Center.

The entertainment will include a new hour-long ski show on Lake Orion by the Silver Lake Ski Club, based in Fenton. The club is performing at 3 p.m. on Saturday and again at noon on Sunday.

Participants in the ski show range in age from four to over 50-years-old. Up to ten skiers will crisscross the lake stage simultaneously. The Cypress Gardens-type ski show will feature pyramids, bare-foot skiing, ski jumping and a ballet line. The Silver Lake Ski Club has placed as high as third in national tournaments.

Spectators will be able to watch the show from either Greens Park, Pelton's Point, or from boats on Lake Orion.

"People will really enjoy watching this talented ski club perform at the event," Harrison said. "I think it will draw quite a crowd."

Among the returning events is the Chalk Art Challenge, in the Orion Art Center parking lot. Participants are allotted a square and provided professional chalk for $10. Several categories, including Best in Show and Best Use of Dragon Theme, will be recognized with cash prizes totaling $500.

Artists begin their work the morning Dragon on the Lake begins, and have the entire weekend to complete a dragon-themed masterpiece. Visitors can watch as the chalk artists of all ages and experience show their interpretation of the theme and let their ideas blossom, turning a blank patch of pavement into a chalk gallery, Harrison said.

In 2010, 36 artists participated in the Challenge, and space is still available to join this year, alongside last year's returning winners. Artists of all ages are invited to register. "As the weekend unfolds, the art progresses in such a neat way," said Harrison.

Other featured events are the lighted boat parade in coordination with the Lake Orion Lake Association, which kicks off Dragon on the Lake at dusk Friday night. Anyone with a decorated boat can register for the parade and follow the fire-breathing dragon around Lake Orion.

Also scheduled are the popular dragon boat races, which take place Sunday. Registrations for teams of 21 people are still being accepted. For more information on the schedule of events, race participation forms and other activities, visit www.dragononthelake.com.

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