Celebrate with an Arty Party at the Quinlan

By Tara Holland, publisher of Macaroni Kid Gainesville-Flowery Branch August 24, 2016

This past Sunday, we had the pleasure of hosting and attending an Arty Party at the Quinlan Visual Arts Center for 5 of BigMac Kid's friends and their parents. He loves all things dinosaurs right now, so we chose a dinosaur theme and our instructor came up with an age appropriate design.


We were able to bring our own snacks and decorations to go with our theme and set up while the instructor (Mary) got the art supplies ready for our group. The kids were excited to see the art around the studio and couldn't wait to make their own masterpieces.

Mary was an awesome teacher. Everyone received a blank canvas and we were shown a sketch of what the end product would resemble. She took us through each step one at a time, explaining why we were doing each thing. The kids had several opportunities to take snack breaks while waiting for different parts of their painting to dry. The atmosphere was calm and light, with the kids talking to each other but still concentrating.

Since I tend to be a helicopter mom, I really appreciated the fact that we were told up front not to help the kids or do it for them. This was so they could make the painting their own and have a sense of ownership. There was no right or wrong way to make their dinosaur. We were jokingly warned that we would be put in "time-out" which the kids thought was hilarious!

I do recommend that you either bring a smock, or wear clothes that you don't mind getting dirty; because the paint is not washable from fabrics and kids aren't always the neatest painters!


We were given a 2 hour time period, but the kids were finished with their paintings before that. This gave them time to unwind, let their paintings dry, and have some more snacks. I definitely recommend factoring in the ages of the kids at your party as to how long their attention span will hold, and have realistic expectations. The instructors at the Quinlan have plenty of experience with groups of children, so listen to their recommendations.

Everyone in our group had fun and the dinosaurs each turned out unique. You could tell that the kids were proud to say they did a painting all on their own and were excited to take them home.

A huge thank you to the Quinlan Visual Arts Center for hosting our party and letting us see just how much fun art can be with friends! Check out more pictures in my Arty Party Facebook Album.


About Arty Parties:

Customize your Arty Party just for you! Incorporate a personal theme and we’ll provide the supplies and inspiration.  Please provide your own refreshments and decorations. 

Child parties: $20 per child 
(5 child minimum)
Adults may participate in the child's party project, just pay the adult fee.
Adult parties: $25 per adult
(4 minimum) (adults use more supplies)

· Your own Arty Party theme
· Up to two hours of class time
· Art supplies and instruction
· Free Gallery Entry

Choose from:
· Pottery
· Jewelry Making
· Painting on Canvas
· Scrapbooking
· Mosaics
· Printmaking

Perfect for:
· Kid’s Birthdays
· Scout Troops
· Home School Groups
· Mother’s Morning Out
· Reunions
· Bachelorettes
· Sororities/Girl’s Night Out

"It was so much fun last time! The girls decided we want to do this either quarterly or bi-monthly!" - D. Gregson, Customized Painting for Staff Party

"We had a blast! Mary was absolutely wonderful. We all left feeling like accomplished artists with beautiful masterpieces." - C. Brown, Customized AKA Sorority Monogram Party  


"We had so much fun doing our tin can mosaics. Looking forward to another class!" - A. Lewis, Customized Mixed Media Party