by Dennis Dalman
Many people upon entering Sartell High School’s lobby will get a rush of nostalgia when they see a row of five seats that were once part of the Hubert H. Humphrey Metrodome. Who knows? They might be the same seats they once sat in when they enjoyed a Twins game or other event.
The dome was torn down several years ago, and a new stadium, Target Field, was built. Many of the old dome’s fixtures, including its seats, were sold or given away as nostalgic souvenirs. Cori Schneider of Sartell managed to secure a row of seats and donated them to the Art in Motion program in the Sartell School District.
Industrial-technical education instructor Joe Schulte and two of his advanced-welding students soon had a good idea. Transform the seats to become fixtures in the high school’s lobby. After a lot of brainstorming they came up with a way to make their idea work. After securing the seats with a solid sitting platform, they put the final flourish on it – the Sartell Sabre logo on each end of the row of seats.
Recently, the school hosted an “unveiling” of the refurbished seats.
Cori Schneider is the mother of two students in the Sartell school system. She is also an artist who began the Art in Motion program two years ago. It was, she said, “a vision to bring more art into the everyday school environment by collaborating with teachers, working with students and area artists to create fun projects that promote art, goodwill and enhance the sense of community.”
Art in Motion is possible due to funding from the Sartell-St. Stephen Education Foundation, the Central Minnesota Arts Board and support from teachers and administrators at Sartell High School.
In just two years, Art in Motion has made possible a wide variety of art projects. They include large-scale murals; mobiles; a master class for students; a performance by Heatbox, an acclaimed Minneapolis musician; and a metal-sculpture collaboration with St. Cloud artist (and Sartell High School alumna) Heidi Jueb.
The latter project was created as a “welcome” to the high school’s lobby. With the help of 80 students, the multi-paneled work was fashioned from recycled materials, photos taken of school students, welded panels and laser images created on a printer loaned from St. Cloud State University.
Jueb led the project with students from three classes: photography, multimedia and metals fabrication. Instructors who helped included Jess Boline, Angela Heckman, Nick Phillips and Joe Schulte.
“Inspiring artful additions are being added to the school environment,” Schneider said, “to make it a hip, welcoming, thought-provoking place to learn and work in for students, staff and community members.”
Thanks to additional funding, the Art in Motion will continue next year, Schneider noted.
Five people at the unveiling ceremony try out the old Dome seats in the lobby of Sartell High School. From left to right are Pam Raden, school-board member; Cori Schneider, Art in Motion founder; Adam Dullinger, one of the welding artists in the Dome-seat project; Brenda Steve, high-school principal; and Joe Schulte, industrial-technical education teacher.
Art in Motion projects at Sartell High School most definitely involve collaborative, hands-on work, as this photo shows. Students in the photo are measuring one of the square panels for the “Welcome” project.
These are some of the panels in the “Welcome” lobby Art in Motion project.
Dalton Foss (left) and Adam Dullinger, both advanced welders in Joe Schulte’s technology class, put together a row of five seats that once held fans in the Hubert H. Humphrey Metrodome. Their creative work was one of the school’s Art in Motion projects.