Trail Hand installation ceremonies set for June 1

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You may have noticed art installations of large, decorative hands appearing throughout the county at nearby trails. The art installations are unique interpretations by local artists of the Trail HANDS theme of Heritage, Art, Nature, Dreams and Stories.

The hands will be a permanent installation. Plans are underway to dedicate them on June 1 to coincide with National Trail Day.

Residents and visitors alike are encouraged to view each of the five hands and hike the beautiful trails of Patrick County. Those who visit all five hands can receive an official trail hands magnet at a local business in Patrick County.

The Trail Hands group also will be launch its website, which includes an interactive trail map and paper maps to help locate nearby trails.                

The public is invited to attend the various dedication ceremonies that will be held at locations throughout the county, including: 

Artist Pepper Martin’s hand titled “All Trails Lead to Home” will be dedicated at 8:45 a.m. at the Reynolds Homestead in Critz. Each finger on this beautifully painted hand represents a landmark in Patrick County.

Sarah Reyburn’s project hand, titled “Mountain Leaves,” will be dedicated at 11 a.m. at Dan River Park in Ararat. This colorfully painted hand details the changing seasons in the mountains.                              

Artist Grace Helms’ hand, titled “Making Music at the Farm,” will be dedicated at 1 p.m. at the Mountain Top Park in Meadows of Dan. This hand features a large banjo constructed out of recycled items found around the county.     

Joyce Wray’s project hand, “Reflection,” will be dedicated at 3 p.m. at the IC Dehart Park in Woolwine. The hand is covered with hundreds of tiny mirrors to reflect the ever-changing seasons and light of the county.                                   

Artist Nancy Clark’s hand, titled “The Family Feeling of Patrick County,” will be dedicated at 5:30 p.m. at the Mayo River Trail in Stuart. This hand project features an intricate mosaic of fused glass, tile and stone with miniature representations of sights seen every day in the county.    

Visit the Patrick County Trail Hands Facebook page for more information and schedule updates.  

Trail Hands is an Air Shift project supported by Virginia Tech and the Tourism Advisory Council, with donations from Clark Gas and Oil and Mattie B’s. The Trail Hands group also partnered with Bull Mountain Arts, the Dan River Basin Association and the Patrick County Tourism department.

A committee was tasked with bringing this multifaceted project to fruition. Members are Sarah Wray, Sybil Slate, Mitch Sheppard, Grace Helms, Norma Bozenmayer, Anna Lester, Terri Alt, Beth Witt, Jim Allen and Wayne Kirkpatrick.