As people drive by St. Clair Elementary School on Bardot Street, they will notice a steel kite hanging on the outside of the building.
The kite is part of the Kites of Franklin County public art project in celebration of the Franklin County’s bicentennial this year.
St. Clair Elementary’s kite was donated by Paula Dace to honor former elementary principal Morris Allen.
Allen served as elementary principal for 24 years from 1952-1976, according to Assistant Superintendent Nadine Aitch.
“He was a big man who we all respected,” Dace said. “He taught many children how to make kites and fly them.”
The district also held a kite day where prizes were given out.
“It was a fun day of outdoor activities,” Dace said.
The kite located at the elementary school is yellow. It was created by E-Z Signs and features colorful handprints by children.
Carla Wulfers told The Missourian that the St. Clair Historical Museum also will participate in the kite project. She said they plan to debut the kite at the museum’s annual banquet set for Feb. 23.
About the Kites
An organization or individual can purchase a kite to be displayed in surrounding communities in honor of the county’s 200th birthday and namesake Ben Franklin.
A total of 200 stainless steel kites were produced by Heat and Control of Union and they can be purchased for $200 each. The kites can be decorated and hung throughout the county as part of a public art exhibit.
The kites measure 2 feet by 3 feet with a 2-foot-long tail.
The project is modeled after popular art events such as CowParade, a display of brightly painted bovine statues that has visited many cities around the world over the last 20 years, and, closer to home, St. Louis’ 250th Birthday Cakes, which were placed all over the St. Louis Metro area.
One cake was even placed near the Washington Historical Society Museum.
The goal of the Kites of Franklin County is to encourage residents and visitors alike to explore and discover Franklin County’s communities, businesses, parks and tourist destinations. The kites also can be a source of community pride and a reflection of the area’s creativity, innovation and imagination.
For more information, visit franklinmo200.com/kites.
The Sullivan Scenic Regional Library and the Friends of the Library also are participating in the Franklin County bicentennial kite project.
The Friends of the Library purchased one of the metal kites. The kite will have a vinyl wrap featuring the Friends of the Library logo and signatures of Sullivan Library patrons.
Patrons are welcome to come by the library to sign the kite.
The Friends of the Library also would appreciate any small donation to help with the cost of the project, although it is not required in order to participate in the project.
The library staff and members of the FOTL are excited to be a part of this countywide project celebrating the 200th anniversary of the establishment of Franklin County, as it ties with Benjamin Franklin, the press release states.
The FOTL would like to thank Pack-N-Ship Etc., and Taylor Signs of Sullivan.