Woodruff's McKinney Park to Host Art in the Park

In an effort to bring art to the city of Woodruff, South Carolina, newly renovated W.R. McKinney Park will be hosting an Art in the Park series that will take place on Saturdays late this spring and during the summer. 

In the year since McKinney Park reopened after being fully remodeled, it has become an epicenter of activity in downtown Woodruff, hosting events such as the Piggin’ in the Park BBQ Competition and the Cruisin’ In Classic Car Show. According to Alyson Leslie, City of Woodruff Community/Economic Development Director, “We wanted to create a place to hold more than just sporting events.” The park, which has an amphitheater, splash pads for children, a new concession stand, and new walking trails, is an ideal location for the Art in the Park series. Woodruff’s Art in the Park series is one of four projects funded by Elevate Upstate and Hughes Investments in 2015. Anderson Mayor and Ten at the Top Board Member Terence Roberts and Hughes Investments President Phil Hughes presented 2015 Elevate Grant awards to the following recipients: Alyson Leslie, City of Woodruff; Nancy Halverson, The Children’s Museum of the Upstate; Jennifer Evins, Spartanburg County Foundation; Stephanie Turner, Greenwood Farmer’s Market; and Anne Craig, Greenwood Arts Center. 

The Art in the Park classes will take place in the Mckinney Park Amphitheater on Saturday mornings from 10:00 a.m. to noon and are free to the public. All supplies are provided to participants at no cost. Seats for each class are limited, and they can fill up quickly. Classes will include a variety of topics, from jewelry making to alcohol ink painting to cooking demonstrations. W. R. McKinney Park is located at the corner of East Pine and South Pearson streets, and it is within walking distance from downtown Woodruff. 

Participants can expect to leave the classes with pieces of art that are sure to wow their family and friends. One of last year’s most popular classes was the alcohol ink painting class, which was led by Jivey Star Studio of Boiling, Springs, SC. Participants selected materials for their laser art painting projects and produced their own works of art. 

Debbie Harris, the owner of Studio Bee Creations, hosted a workshop entitled “The Art of Collage” last year in July. Harris explains that, in the classes that she teaches, participants create “one-of-a-kind Mixed Media ART... whimsical creations with a POP of color.” 

The schedule for the Art in the Park series will be posted on the City of Woodruff events page in the near future. Updates on City of Woodruff events are also available on the W.R. McKinney Park Facebook page. Classes fill up quickly, and are generally limited to 10–20 people, depending on the class. If you are interested in learning more about the 2017 Arts in the Park series, please email Alyson Leslie at aleslie@cityofwoodruff.com or by calling (864) 476-8154 ext. 47. 


Photos courtesy of the City of Woodruff.

Angela Rogers is a teacher, bibliophile, and freelance writer who is a lifelong resident of the Upstate.