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Art, dance events slated at Historic Washington State Park

by Gazette Staff | September 6, 2023 at 10:19 a.m.
In this undated photo, people learn a traditional dance at Historic Washington State Park. The park will host a "Dances of the Past" workshop Saturday, Sept. 30, 2023. (Photo courtesy of HWSP)

WASHINGTON, Ark. -- Upcoming events at Historic Washington State Park will spotlight local artists and provide an opportunity to learn traditional dance.

The park will host an opening reception for the "Artists of Washington" exhibit Sept. 23 and a "Dances of the Past" workshop Sept. 30, according to a pair of news releases.

Steven Carlson, an expert on local artist Effie Anderson Smith, will speak at the reception, which is free and open to the public.

The work of artists from 19th-century to present-day Washington and Hempstead counties will be showcased in the "Artists of Washington" exhibit. It will feature artwork from Hempstead County residents, including Jenny Delony Rice, Mary Carrigan and Ann Bittick.

As part of the opening reception, work of Hempstead County resident Effie Anderson Smith will be on display Sept. 22 through Sept. 24. The brief showing is curated by Carlson, who is curator of the E.A. Smith Archive. It is sponsored by the Arkansas State Archives.

Dance experience is not required for the workshop, described as a "fun evening of dance and fellowship."

The park promises that participants will learn dances such as the Virginia Reel and many more.

Refreshments will be served. Comfortable shoes are recommended, and casual or period dress is welcomed.

(The reception is scheduled for 1:30 p.m. Saturday, Sept. 23, at the park's 1874 Visitor Information Center, 100 SW Morrison St. The workshop is scheduled for 7 p.m. to 9 p.m. Saturday, Sept. 30. Cost for attendance to the workshop is $15 single or $25 per couple. For more information or to register, call 870-983-2684 or email [email protected].)

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