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The House The Pass Built

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By Cindy Watson –

Artwork takes on the form of a little red schoolhouse that is raising money for a local non-profit organization; as the Banning Cultural Alliance continues to sell raffle tickets, where one lucky winner will win the playhouse in time for December holiday gift giving.

The “Art of Wood” project began at the Alliance's sixth annual Art Hop, where several San Gorgonio Pass area builders and craftsmen joined together, completing the construction of a Little Red Schoolhouse, in one day.

“They completed everything but the painting, due to the winds during the Art Hop,” stated Carol Newkirk, the executive director of the Alliance. “The only other thing missing that day was the bell in the tower of the playhouse,” she added.

Dubbed by Alliance members as “The House the Pass Built,” both were completed on a later date.

"Now that we have done one (referring to the playhouse) and worked out many of the problems, we want this to become an annual event," said Mike Rose, the Alliance board member who coordinated the project and also contributed construction supplies.

The playhouse has since been at local events such as the Cherry Festival in Beaumont and the recent Stagecoach Days where raffle tickets were sold for $1.00 per ticket.

“We have learned a great deal,” said Rose who admits moving the structure from place to place has been a logistical nightmare.

“It has been well worth it,” he added.

“The Alliance was glad to involve another part of the local population with the arts, by utilizing their construction and design talents, in this project,” he continued.

Contractors, builders, and suppliers who contributed their talents or participated in the project include David Adrian of Draftech, Banning; 84 Lumber, Beaumont; Sean Dusky and Brian Rose of Try-Con Development, Cabazon; All Purpose Rentals, Beaumont and KV Paint of Beaumont.

Other contributors include Altura Roofing and Moore Painting of La Qunita.

Greg Whitmore of Whitmore Construction of Banning provided the trailer and time to transport the House the Pass Built.

“A very special thank you to all the people who made this project such a success,” said Newkirk.

“Because of them one lucky family with the winning ticket will have a well-constructed playhouse that is large enough for adults to enter and enjoy,” she added.

“The playhouse will be raffled off at the Alliance's annual Phineas Festival of Lights on December 3, 2011, with plenty of time for the lucky winner to have it in place for the holidays,” according to Newkirk.

Call the Alliance 951-922-4911 to buy raffle tickets and for more information on this and all of their programs.

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