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Idaho Enterprise

Evening of the Arts Raises Funds for the hospital

Shelby Gunter Blackner displayed a number of her watercolor pieces at the Evening. She placed a batch of her cards and an Easter-appropriate painting in the Live Auction.

The annual Evening of the Arts fundraiser and auction for Nell J Redfield Memorial Hospital hosted a crowded Event Center full of supporters last week, as a number of talented local artists took center stage against a backdrop of silent auction tables, and a fun live auction session.  The event is the largest single fundraiser of the year for the hospital, which uses the funds raised for a variety of projects throughout the year.  In recent years, the funds raised have been used to upgrade patient facilities, acquire patient monitoring equipment, wheelchairs, eye testing equipment, and many other items.

This year’s Evening of the Arts fundraiser, the 11th overall (2 years were missed due to COVID restrictions), had two major purposes:  to provide a venue for some of Oneida County’s exceptional artists to display their works and to raise funds to benefit the local Hospital.

Although the event is held every year, visitors never know what to expect as the nature of the artists themselves change every time.  In the past, such arts as bonsai trees, metal anthill sculptures, leatherwork, and taxidermy have
been featured. 

This year was no different, as a range of various media and styles were on display.  Acting on a suggestion from Shara Olsen last year, the Hospital Foundation invited the Oneida Quilters to exhibit some of their members’ exquisite quilts as works of art. The variety of and skilled construction of the quilts on display were truly impressive, and certainly put to lie the idea that quilting is anything but a fine art.  The Oneida Quilters holds monthly meetings where over 30 members gather to display and discuss their latest work, teach each other techniques, and share ideas for future projects.  The Oneida Quilters began nearly 40 years ago, and includes members from Northern Utah, Marsh Valley, and all around Oneida County. The Quilters host their annual Quilt Show and Bake Sale during the Malad Valley Welsh Festival on the last weekend of June. 

Allison Eliason, who lives in Holbrook with her husband Brayden and her four kids, displayed a selection of her photographic art.  Ranging from a beautifully captured sunset over a familiar barn and a picture of her husband on horseback (which was used in official program materials by the Cattleman’s Association) to an evocative closeup of one of her horse’s faces, Allison’s work did an amazing job of capturing the intimate grandeur of western life.

Chesley Lewis, who was unable to attend in person due to work commitments, nonetheless displayed his impressive collection of 3-D wood signage, which also spoke to both the cowboy aesthetic of the area, as well as the use of modern and even cutting edge (literally in this case) technology.

 Jerry Camp is originally from Utah, but now considers Malad home after moving here with his wife two years ago.  Camp has been painting in one fashion or another since high school, he currently undertakes it in a more serious way, as he now exhibits and sells his works in the Relics Gallery in Holladay, Utah. He is a member of the Intermountain Society of Artists and the Oil Painters of America.  Many of the paintings displayed by Camp had a familiar look to visitors, as their subjects included perspectives of the local area, including a few of Malad itself.  A view of the mountains to the east done from Malad City Park was a particular standout.  

Shelby Gunter Blackner took up watercolor relatively recently, but has come a long way in her craft in the last few years.  She specializes in family portraits, and made to order paintings of people and places people want to see memorialized.  She also produces cards of her art, which are wonderfully stylized and uniquely stamped with her personality.

Art students from a range of ages and classes at local school displayed their artwork, including the 4th and 5th graders of Malad Elementary School and the art students of Malad Middle and High Schools under the instruction of Krystal Fonnesbeck.  Adams herself was not able to attend, but donated a pair of giclee prints to the live auction, including a literal pear, and an array of license plates.  

The other artists also contributed works to the live auction, where they joined other items such as a trip to an Island Park cabin donated by Jim Everson, a fantastically crafted bell by Doug Adams, a Firepit and Grill donated by Hands of Hope, and outdoor chairs donated by Dean and Regene Jones.

The Malad High School culinary arts students prepared popcorn treats, and Malad High School’s Chamber Choir performed a trio of impressive numbers during the evening’s event.

To celebrate spring, the Peeps dioramas designed by several departments at the Hospital were on display, made with marshmallow chicks and bunnies.

The silent auction tables stayed busy until the last second budding was open, with a number of very competitive bids.  Items up for auction included a wide range of things, from afghans and jewelry to floral arrangements and gift certificates, a box of beef to a crocheted horse, and everything in between.  A large number of people and organizations donated to the auction.

Donations were made by the Abbott/Fowler Families, Albert’s Service, Allen Drug and Sue Evans, ATC, Black Swan, the Blue Goose, Buttars Tractor, Cache Valley Center for the Arts, Cammy Nielsen, Christine Davis, the City of Malad, Country ChemDry, Daisy Hollow Floral and Gift, Defend Pest and Lawn, Dianne Adams, Edith’s Collective, Firth Cattle Company, Hale Centre Theatre, Hess Truck Auto Ag, Hess Pumice Perlite, Idaho Milling and Grain, Idaho Outdoor Properties, Ihler Hydro Seed, InReach Lab Partners, IronDoor Smokehouse and Catering, J Peak Propane, John Williams Properties, John Deere Stotz, Kanine Korner, KJs, Las Fiestas, Pizza Stop, Lava Hot Springs, LeGrande Aqua Plunge, Malad Bowl, Malad Drive-In, Malad Rock, Malad Valley Dental Clinic, Mallory Wheatley, Mountain States Insurance Group, Mountain Valley Realty, NAPA Auto Parts, Nimer’s Repair, Once Upon a Tree, Oneida County EMS, Oneida Crisis Center, Oneida Family Dental, Oxford Packing, Subway, PT Solutions—Greg Compton, PT Welding, Rich and Lynn Moore, Ron Keller Tire, Russell and Wendy Boyer, Rocking A Ranch, Swaffles and Cream, The Gym, the Idaho Enterprise, Thomas Electric and Furniture, Thomas Market, Tiffany Lewis Jeppsen, Bonnie John, Lucinda Sweeten (in memory of Boyd Lewis), Tiny Tots Daycare and Preschool, Tumbled, U and I Furniture, Up the Creek, U Bank, Verlene Williams, Ward’s Ace and Country Store, and Willow Wishing Treats.  

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