The Kids Beat

Burlington Mom Plans Yarn-Bombing Project

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Picture a serpentine crabapple tree covered in a patchwork of colorful yarn pieces. That's what Burlington resident Carrie Napolitan envisions for a tree in front of her children's school as Valentine's Day approaches. Napolitan, mom to a second grader and a preschooler at Integrated Arts Academy at H.O. Wheeler in Burlington, is the organizer of Project Heart VT, an idea that came to her in the aftermath of the presidential election. Feeling uncertain about what the future would bring — and hearing about students who felt similarly — Napolitan was inspired by a hot-pink yarn bombing art installation in Europe designed to bring attention to the plight of refugees. Community members are encouraged to knit or crochet colorful swatches of yarn, which will be wrapped and sewn together around the tree trunk and branches. Additionally, students at IAA will write positive messages on fabric hearts, which will be laminated and hung from the tree. The installation will stay up through the end of the school year and serve as "a reminder that IAA welcomes everyone," said Napolitan, and is a "safe place and a loving place."

To learn more about Project Heart VT, find it on Facebook or send contributions to Project Heart, Integrated Arts Academy, 6 Archibald St., Burlington VT 05401.

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