Rum River Art Center gives kids, adults an artistic outlet

- A quiet walk along the river soon turned into a cacophony of shutter clicks as photographers swarmed a man and his baby in Anoka, Minn. last week. But, the photographers were not the paparazzi. They were young ladies taking a photography class at the Rum River Art Center, a unique non-profit in Anoka. 

“It’s this really cool thing in my backyard. And thanks to my chubby-cheeked daughter, I got to find out about something cool in Anoka,” said Jeremie Mullinix, who was out with his daughter, Willow.

The Rum River Art Center opened in 2009, and offers adults and kids a variety of art classes — from photography to painting to pottery.

I think it’s the need for people just to have an artistic outlet,” Larry Weinberg, who started the center, said. “We’ve had a number of people that have found us this summer. And the joy in their face when they find a place they can come in, feel comfortable, we’re very low key, we welcome anybody.” 

Weinberg said he hopes the art center makes up for declining art courses in schools

“We’re just trying to let art grow in the northern suburb here. That was one of our goals, Weinberg told Fox 9. “I feel really good to see all the creativity and the things that are growing in these kids.”

On Thursday, as Fox 9 stopped by, one room contained kids painting dragons. In another room, a group of girls critiqued photographs they took the previous day. The subject of some of those photographs was Willow, the child of Jeremie.

“Something like this is just tremendous for the young kids. It’s awesome,” Jeremie told Fox 9.

“It’s a lot of fun to see all the creativity that’s going on a weekly, daily basis,” Weinberg said.

For information on the classes and events at the Rum River Art Center, visit rumriverart.com

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