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Friday, April 12, 2019

Sunflowers and Prayers


This piece is by Bill Naiman.
A small but meaningful art exhibit at a local library is shining a spotlight on childhood cancer. Avon Lake Public Library visitors can view a couple dozen works of art, mostly paintings, that incorporate sunflowers, the symbol of the local nonprofit Prayers from Maria – Children’s Glioma Cancer Foundation.

The foundation was established by Ed and Megan McNamara in memory of their daughter Maria, who died in July 14, 2007, at age 7 after being diagnosed with a cancerous brain tumor. It raises money for research into gliomas, including finding their causes and better treatments.

Here are a few of the paintings in the exhibit.
Each year, thousands of Greater Clevelanders, as well as people from other cities and states, visit the Prayers from Maria Field of Hope. The field in Avon, Ohio, is where sunflowers usually bloom in September, Childhood Cancer Awareness Month.

If you’re a local resident with a Facebook or Instagram account, you’ve almost certainly seen photos of the field on your feed. You can follow Maria's Field of Hope on Facebook to keep abreast of when the sunflowers will bloom this year.

The free art exhibit, in which most of the pieces are for sale, will be at the library through the end of April. It’s hard to pick a favorite, but the photos above offer a sample of what you’ll see there.

A large sign near the library’s front entrance invites visitors to fill out prayer cards that will be taken to the sunflower field near Chester and Jaycox roads. The Waugaman Gallery, site of the exhibit, also has a guest book.

A public artists reception for the exhibit will be held from 2 to 4 p.m. Sunday at the library.



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