Community center partners with ESSA, Flora Roja for flag project

Wednesday, October 7, 2020

The Eureka Springs Community Center (ESCC) is working with Eureka Springs School of the Arts (ESSA) and Flora Roja on the Community Hope Flag Project.

The project invites everyone to make their own small flag to be hung along with flags from their friends and neighbors at ESCC as an illustration of hope and unity for all to enjoy.

"We can't wait to see and display the flags outside at the ESCC for everyone to enjoy safely," said ESCC activities director Cat Luna. "These flags will be a daily reminder of the importance of every Eurekan they will send a clear message of the hope that we each have for one another to thrive and be one in spirit."

According to a press release from the community center, flags tell our stories through symbols and colors, delivering distinct and even complex messages. The release says Eureka Springs resident, business owner and healer Francesca Garcia-Giri has been considering the rifts that seem to be forming in our world and community and how we might reach out to one another during these challenging times.

"Here we are, months into a world turned upside down," Garcia-Giri said. "Art is so healing, and this is such a creative community that it made sense to find a way to create a community art project."

The Community Hope Flag Project was born when Garcia-Giri reached out to ESCC and ESSA to partner in bringing her vision to life. According to the release, Garcia-Giri felt it was important for everyone to collaborate on the project young or old, with no experience necessary and with safe social distancing.

"One day I was watching some prayer flags flapping in the breeze. They looked so pretty," Garcia-Giri said. "I thought we could do this each make a prayer flag. It could be our love letter to Eureka, to each other, to the earth. They would be like little snapshots of each other's worlds, a way to connect with folks we haven't seen in a while."

Kelly McDonough, executive director of ESSA, said she is looking forward to making some flags of her own.

"All of us at ESSA are looking forward to supporting and participating in this project. We so miss seeing everyone and creating together, and this is a lovely way to recapture some of the creative energy that we love so much about our community," McDonough said.

All you need to participate, the release says, is some fabric, a touch of sewing or gluing and your creativity. If you don't have supplies, project kits are available throughout Eureka Springs at Eureka Springs Community Center at 44 Kingshighway, Red Scottie Fibers at 51 Spring St., Flora Roja Acupuncture & Herbal Apothecary at 105 E. Passion Play Road and Eureka Springs School of the Arts at 15751 US 62.

For instructions on how to make your flag, visit www.escommunity.org/activities-events/ or www.essa-art.org/events/community-hope-flag-project/. Drop off your flag (or flags!) at one of the participating locations by 10 a.m. on Thursday, Oct. 29, for your flag to be displayed, and keep an eye on social media for updates on the project and the unveiling of the flags.

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