2008-09-11 / About Town

Ghouls' Rules raises fun with eco-friendly theme

By Michaela Kennedy

Dori Hirsch, from left, Barbara Hutchison, Elizabeth Congdon and Kate Petrie are the driving forces behind the new Jamestown Arts Center and its new creation, Ghoul's Rules. Photo by Michaela Kennedy Dori Hirsch, from left, Barbara Hutchison, Elizabeth Congdon and Kate Petrie are the driving forces behind the new Jamestown Arts Center and its new creation, Ghoul's Rules. Photo by Michaela Kennedy Autumn is here, but that quirky island urge to duct tape things together for a contest still prevails. Ghouls' Rules, a dance party slated for Oct. 25, challenges all ages to enter an original design costume created from untraditional materials.

The island-wide costume show, put on by the Jamestown Arts Center, will be held at the Jamestown Community Center. The event is a chance to showcase the creativity and fun in people, according to the directors of the arts center. Think green and ghoulish, in an eco-green kind of way, coordinator Kate Petrie said.

The JAC is a non-profit organization newly formed by artists Kate Petrie, Elizabeth Congdon, Dori Hirsch, Jocelyn Donahue, Barbara Hutchison and Jane Mitchell. "We believe that our island needs and can support an arts center," Petrie said for the group. The directors hope to unite island artists and give them a space where they can exhibit, perform, teach, mentor and participate in community outreach programs.

The costume party will help the arts center kick off its first year with a monster celebration. Congdon secured a grant from the Rhode Island Foundation, which will be used to hire planning consultants for the center.

The Ghouls' Rules competition idea came to Petrie when she went with her family to a fashion show at the Rhode Island School of Design. She saw a dress made out of rubber bands. She was amused by a ball dress made out of newspaper. She thought the eco-conscious raising idea could easily be adapted in a fun theme for Jamestown.

The fashion idea became a Jamestown costume show with a focus on eco-green. Ghoul organizers encourage participants to use all recycled or reusable materials, and let the imagination run wild. The "who would've thought" factor is huge here, Petrie adds. "Don't spend the money. Use your hands. Get creative."

Some of the artists joked about putting out a special challenge to participants of the summer Fools' Rules competition. Here, they said, is yet another chance to bring out the duct tape, the bent ping-pong balls—and building the spectacle on site is not a requirement.

A silent auction will be held during the evening to raise money for the new arts organization.

A Jamestown landscape donated by Congdon and a black and white silhouette given by Petrie were some auction items already received for the evening. The planning crew invites more sponsors to help support the grass-roots effort.

The event is a fund-raiser for the JAC, but the artists putting the event together plan something more rowdy. It's a "fun-raiser," they say. "A friend-raiser," Congdon adds.

Kathleen Brown and Mary Beth Murphy are lined up to be co-masters of "scaremonies."

Those ready to step up to the eco-challenge should sign up by Oct. 20, giving the title of the costume and materials used. The more recycled materials used the better, they said. To volunteer or help sponsor the event with a silent auction donation, contact the Jamestown Arts Center by telephone or e-mail. For more information, visit online at www.jamestownartcenter. org or call Petrie at 423-9684.

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