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Additional Contacts: Larry Hodge, (903) 670-2255; larry.hodge@tpwd.texas.gov; James Booker, (903) 670-2266; james.booker@tpwd.texas.gov

TPWD Website: http://www.tpwd.state.tx.us

TPWD News Release — June 7, 2011

State-Fish Art Contest Show and Fair at Texas Freshwater Fisheries Center June 25

ATHENS—The 13th annual Wildlife Forever State-Fish Art Expo comes to the Texas Freshwater Fisheries Center June 25, and a full slate of art- and fishing-related activities is planned.

Headlining the show is the display of 2011’s best student-rendered artwork of fishes. Students from across the nation will gather in Athens to compete for national honors and receive awards for winning their state contests.

In keeping with the “Art’s Better Outside” theme of the event, visitors can dine on fair-type food, fish in the stocked casting pond, watch artists demonstrate their skills or shop for a piece of art to hang over the sofa.

Visitors may view all the artwork in the Hart-Morris Conference Center and then vote for their favorite as the People’s Choice Award. Every piece of art on display was a winner at the state level in the annual Wildlife Forever State-Fish Art Contest.

Visiting artists will be displaying their art—which can be purchased—as well as demonstrating techniques. Nationally known landscape artist Bruce Piel will be a featured artist at the event. Piel maintains a studio in the Athens area.

The Henderson County Art Club is sponsor for the event, and a number of its members will be displaying their work and skills in the TFFC Visitor Center. Other artists will be offering activities and exhibiting their works of acrylic, canvas, watercolor, oils, fish prints, metal sculpture, airbrush and sculpture. The Society for Creative Anachronism will be demonstrating medieval costumes and skills.

Also sponsoring the event and hosting student artists and their families for a Friday hot dog feast and shopping trip is Wulf Outdoor Sports of Athens.

Regularly scheduled dive shows followed by a tram tour of the hatchery will take place at 11:00 a.m. and 2:00 p.m. Fishing and all exhibits will be available as usual from 9:00 a.m. until 4:00 p.m.

TFFC is headquarters for the Texas division of the contest and is hosting this year’s national expo and competition where Best of Show and Art of Conservation Stamp Award winners will be announced. On-site voting for the People’s Choice Award will complete on-line balloting. Visitors can choose their favorite and help pick the winner.

Art’s Better Outside will take place from 9:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m. June 25. A press release listing all the Texas winners can be found at http://www.tpwd.state.tx.us/newsmedia/releases/?req=20110502b. The event is free with paid admission to TFFC. For more information and directions, visit www.tpwd.state.tx.us/tffc.

A video of some of the Texas artwork entered in the contest as well as activities at last year’s Art’s Better Outside event can be viewed at http://www.facebook.com/pages/Texas-Freshwater-Fisheries-Center/128462433868391.

Wildlife Forever’s 13th annual State-Fish Art Contest was made possible by support from the North American Fishing Club; Rapala; Blick Art Materials; The Art Institutes International, Minnesota; the U.S. Forest Service Eastern Region; and the Texas Freshwater Fisheries Center.

Texas sponsors include the Toyota Texas Bass Classic, which funds cash prizes for Texas winners and travel expenses for first-place winners and their families to attend the national event; and Strike King Lures, which provides a fishing lure to each Texas entrant.

Wildlife Forever is a conservation organization whose mission is to conserve America’s wildlife heritage through conservation education, preservation of habitat and management of fish and wildlife. Learn more at http://www.wildlifeforever.org.

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