WORTH THE DRIVE: Piatt Castle Mac-A-Cheek in Logan County offers day to enjoy art and nature

A relaxing nature walk and a summer day full of exploration is waiting for you at Piatt Castle Mac-A-Cheek in Logan County.

The Art and Science of Nature, a free, public event, will be held at the Mack-A-Cheek Castle on Sunday, July 31 from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m.

The castle itself was originally built as a home for Abram and Eleanor Piatt from 1864-1871. The charming yet vintage home consists of limestone on the exterior in addition to a family farm. The interior is composed of a variety of woods, gothic panels and parquet flooring directly from the very own family sawmill using lumber from the trees in their yard. The Fresco-secco ceiling pattern was hand painted by artist Oliver Frey in 1881. Throughout the design, flowers and grains were incorporated. Research has shown that the flowers and grains were a part of the 19th century landscape.

Since then, the Piatt family have been inspired by the great outdoors surrounding Mac-A-Cheek Castle. Their inspiration from the woods, fields, streams and lawns around their home will be expressed through painting, poetry and photography. Some of their artistic perspectives on the property will be shown at the event.

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In addition, guests artists will participate. Featured artists include Keara Henry on stencil art, Grace Matchett and Robin Schuricht portraying 19th century painters, and dancer/choreographer Suzanne Dennis, who will lead a special session titled Trees in Motion.

The Ohio Department of Natural Resources (ODNR) has also lent a helping hand to many projects and programs at Mac-A-Cheek with one of them including the stream restoration project.

Many ODNR naturalists will have the opportunity to work with students at day camps grades 4-6 in July at Castle Camps: The Arts and Science of Nature. Registration is still open for Beasts, Birds, & Bugs slated July 20-22 and Art Inspired by Nature slated July 27-29, which will focus on arts; painting, drama and dance. Campers will be invited back to The Art and Science of Nature event to showcase their projects.

The Art and Science of Nature will also include a wide range of nature programs, including a discussion on a white tail deer with ODNR educator Sarah Schott and several other presentations by Piatt Castle staff such as presentations on trees to towers describing the use of woodwork, a limestone chiseling demonstration and more.

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Members who are part of the board of directors of the Mac-A-Cheek Foundation who are the leaders of public programs will be present to welcome all participants and discuss future plans regarding the recreational and educational activities on the site.

Certain areas of Piatt Castle Mac-A-Cheek have been open for tours since 1912. Self-guided tours of the historic house museum will be offered for regular admission fees on July 31 from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Visit www.piattcastle.org for more information regarding prices, seasonal hours, youth camps and other events to enjoy this summer.

Mac-A-Cheek Castle is located at 10051, Township Road 47, in West Liberty, Ohio.

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