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All students invited to tie-dye mask-making event Aug. 8, 9 & 10

A special mask tie-dying opportunity for all Cook County students is coming up on August 8, 9, and 10 in the outdoor classroom at School District 166, from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. The purpose of the three-day event is to ensure that all Cook County students will have masks to return to school in the fall, so everyone can feel safe and supported in their learning environment.
Families from all local schools are encouraged to take part, from School District 166, Oshki Ogimaag, Great Expectations, and Birch Grove. The mask-making project is for students from kindergarten to 12th grade. 
School District 166 Art teacher Mila Horak is taking the lead on this project, a collaboration with the Grand Marais Art Colony.  Horak says the Art Colony received generous donations from the Sawtooth Mountain Clinic and the North Shore Hospital of white cotton masks and has purchased art supplies through Joy & Co. for every student in the county to tie-dye one mask, and make a beaded fastener to go with it.
The event will be held with COVID-19 precautions--all participants must wear a mask and stay six feet apart. To make that possible, families are asked to sign up for a specific time slot on one of the days. Families are encouraged to come together, but a separate time is required for each child. Find the signup page here. 
During the event, there will be stations. First, a stop for a plain white mask pickup--each mask will have a student name, written in permanent marker.  Students will then visit stations where the dye will be applied. They will also have the opportunity to make a beaded connector for their mask. It's not a make-and-take event, masks need to be finished and washed. Volunteers will do that and will have the masks at the schools by August 12. 
Horak said in addition to the Art Colony, hospital and clinic, the school is working with the North Shore Fiber Guild, Sew Good Goods, Material Girl and Blue Cross/Blue Shield of Minnesota. Additional masks are being made for students by local sewers and BCBS employees. She said the goal is to have five masks per student. 
Use the signup page to participate. For more information or to volunteer with this project, email Mila Horak at or call 218-370-0106 and leave a message. 
WTIP's Rhonda Silence spoke with Art Teacher Mila Horak to learn how this will work.