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Fort Dodge enters video contest

A win would mean FD native paints mural in home city

-Submitted photo
Kris Patrick, director of Main Street Fort Dodge, and others recently show what they believe would be a great spot for a mural. The photo was taken next to the Dariette during filming for a state video contest. If Fort Dodge wins, Ben Schuh will paint a mural in Fort Dodge.

The voting period for a video contest that could result in a Fort Dodge native painting a mural in downtown Fort Dodge begins today.

The 58 second clip submitted by Main Street Fort Dodge is a collage of pictures highlighting recreation opportunities in Fort Dodge. It features a parody of the songs “This Land Is Your Land” by Woody Guthrie and “We Didn’t Start The Fire” by Billy Joel.

Kris Patrick, director of Main Street Fort Dodge; Ron Grebner, owner of River Hops Brewing; Cheryl O’Hern, owner of Spin Markket and Shelly Bottorff, director of the Fort Dodge Fine Arts Association, produced the video.

“It came together quickly,” said Bottorff. “We were able to come up with a concept that everyone was excited about.”

The video took about one week to create, according to Bottorff.

Ben Schuh

“Nathan Schelle and I changed all the words to a couple different songs and made our own little parody,” Bottorff said. “We recorded that at Juniors Motel in Otho. Dave Hearn helped us with the instrumental tracks. We then sent that to Cheryl O’Hern where they did all of the video editing.”

The state contest, called #IowansUnite Community Pride Contest, is a collaboration between the Iowa Economic Development Authority and Iowa Finance Authority.

This contest provides Iowa communities with a chance to showcase their support for small businesses. The prize is a custom mural painted by Ben Schuh, a Fort Dodge native. The mural will welcome visitors to the community’s shopping district or downtown area.

“We really wanted to apply for this and try to get some of his artwork here,” said Bottorff. “We want to have more local artist representation.”

Schuh, a Grand View University graduate, lives and works in Des Moines. He has a large scale studio located in Polk City, according to his official website.

His paintings have been placed with collectors throughout the U.S., Canada and Europe. Three of his murals can be seen in Des Moines.

All contest submissions had to feature the communities’ residents, local small businesses and incorporate elements reflecting each community’s unique brand of hometown pride.

Voting information can be found on the Fort Dodge Fine Arts Association website.

The voting period will end on June 30.

Bottorff said winning the contest would be a nice boost to the arts within the community.

“Any time there is an opportunity to bring something like this to our community — there’s good momentum right now, where we are supporting the arts,” Bottorff said. “There’s been a growth in the amount of people that (understand) art and culture create a higher quality of life along with recreation. I think more people are starting to see that.”

Patrick is excited about the possibility of having Schuh paint a mural in Fort Dodge.

“It would be incredible for Fort Dodge to win a mural by this Fort Dodge native,” Patrick said.

She encourages everyone to cast a vote for Fort Dodge.

“We need people to vote every day during the week-long contest,” Patrick said.

Voting opens today

Who: Fort Dodge

What: #IowansUnite Community Pride Contest

When: Voting starts today

∫ Voting information can be found on the Fort Dodge Fine Arts Association website at www.fdfineartsassociation.org.

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