When you think of Durand, you may think of trains or the train station, but probably not art! However, downtown Durand will be transformed into an Arts District on Friday, May 19, 2017 from Noon to 5:00 PM as part of the Durand Railroad Days Celebration.
Treasures Along the Rail is a self-guided walking art and architecture tour of downtown Durand. Previously referred to as the “ArtWalk”, this year the art event is being reimagined and redesigned to showcase the talents of Durand as well as the existing art and architecture already in Durand’s downtown.
Treasures Along the Rail celebrates the talents of local Artists, Art, Dance, Music, Architecture, and Food. The event will feature twenty pieces of art from art students at Durand Area High School which will be displayed at eight different businesses downtown including Shaw's Pharmacy & Gifts, Then & Now, Dietrich's Flower Shop, RS Green Insurance Agency, Jon Michael's Jewelers, Acker Agency Insurance, Stomping Grounds Coffee Shop and Teasors Salon. National Railroad Memorial, Inc. (NRMI) Secretary, Janice Brownson, told Durand Now this week, "We are joining forces with the Art teacher in hopes that this will become an annual event and grow showcasing local talent and our businesses downtown."
Portraits have long been a staple of art helping us to be familiar with people long before photography was even thought of as a form of art. Treasures Along the Rail is bringing a portrait artist to you as well Friday afternoon, May 19th. A caricature artist will be located at the Chamber of Commerce of Durand and will be drawing free caricatures for individuals participating in the tour from 1:00pm to 5:00pm. Due to limited space available, a special ticket must be used to obtain the free caricature and that ticket can only be obtained (first come first served) from the NRMI representative at the Pullman Baggage Car in Iron Horse Park beginning at Noon.
The walk will also highlight specific local sculptures, art, paintings and Durand architecture making a Durand a very unique railroad city every day. The history of the pieces and the importance of the buildings will be provided making the tour not only a sampling of art and food in Durand but also creating a greater appreciation of the history of Durand.
The walk begins with the annual Children’s Railroad Days Art Display at the Durand Memorial Library, "one of the remaining events from the first Railroad Days," Brownson said, and will end downtown Durand in time for a bite to eat before heading across the tracks to celebrate the Railroad Person of the Year ceremony at Durand Union Station at 6pm.
Of course, there are numerous establishments of food and drink within our community and Treasures Along the Rail will be showcasing these establishments and their specialties’ available for your lunch or dinner pleasure.
At the train station, you will be able to view numerous pieces of railroad art, including the Durand Bicentennial mural painted by Dr. Robert Canas and an art piece connected to Mr. Charles M. Hays and the Titanic.
To take part in the Durand Art District on May 19th, simply plan to go downtown Durand, visit the various businesses and take a walk, Friday afternoon during Railroad Days. If you want to join in the fun of Treasures Along the Rail, simply meet the NRMI representative at the Pullman Baggage Car at Iron Horse Park on Clinton Street, next to the Fire Station, at NOON on Friday, May 19th, to receive your Treasures Along the Rail information packet. The packet will include tour directions, information about local businesses and the art they are exhibiting, as well as information about establishments for food and drink (including a limited number of free caricature tickets). There is no charge for the information packet or to take the tour. Any purchases along the way of art, merchandise, food or drink, are up to you.
Treasures Along the Rail: Art Edition is sponsored by the National Railroad Memorial, Inc., (NRMI) a nonprofit corporation organized as a 501 (C) (3). Our mission is to honor the men and women of the railroad industry by educating the public as to the importance of their roles in our nation’s past, present, and future. NRMI is partnering with the City of Durand to honor these individuals by building the National Railroad Memorial as the center piece of Diamond District Park, downtown Durand. NRMI participates in Durand Railroad Days sponsoring free events located in Iron Horse Park which highlight and celebrate Durand, the quintessential All-American railroad town.