Help! “Flat Stanley” Wants To Meet North Dakota Artists

…and Anyone who wants to share what makes North Dakota Special

This blog was headed in an entirely different direction until I opened the morning mail. A 4th grader from Westminster, MA is involved in a class project to collect information about a particular state and “Katie” received North Dakota. It’s a “Flat Stanley” project, something I had never heard of, but quickly realized has been in existence since 1995 and is based on a 1964 children’s book called Flat Stanley written by Jeff Brown. Apparently “Flat Stanley” is a phenomenon, complete with a website and apps, whose tag line reads “revolutionizing the way kids learn and communicate.” Students in the project create a paper “Flat Stanley” (a representative drawing of the book’s Stanley Lambchop character) and send him off to “exotic places” where people who receive him document the places and activities in which “Flat Stanley” is involved.

Katie’s “paper Flat Stanley” arrived with her letter and she asked the we take him on some crazy North Dakota adventures. I’m guessing young Katie has sent letters to the usual sources–ND Tourism, ND Government entities and probably a variety of museums and galleries. I was happy to know The Arts Center received a request for information. My first inclination was to take “Stanley” snowshoeing or skiing, introduce him to some aspects of a North Dakota winter and our landscape-spin off from last week’s blog. But we are an arts center so my thought is why don’t we introduce “Stanley” to North Dakota’s artists.

Here is what I’d like to happen: I want every artist (or any other North Dakotan) who reads this blog or is an Arts Center Facebook friend to print out on “Stanley’s” picture. Take a photograph of “Stanley” and (if you are an artist), with a piece of your art.  Email this image to me,,with a one to two sentence description/biography and I’ll get them to Katie.  We have 6 weeks to gather as many responses as possible for Katie’s project. I think this is a great way to show that North Dakota is more than it seems and is just and rich and full of creative people as any other state.

Anybody can participate – the more input the better – lets tell Katie what makes North Dakota special.

Recap of Details:

  1. print out “Flat Stanley’s” photo – cut out his image
  2. artists – take a picture of “Stanley” with your artwork (and yourself if you wish)
  3. other North Dakotans – take a picture of “Stanley” with something that makes North Dakota special to you
  4. send your photo with a description to <or> post to The Arts Center’s Facebook Page
  5. please send all responses by March 15
The Culture Builds Community blog is submitted (almost) weekly by Arts Center Gallery Manager Sally Jeppson. She would love to hear your comments.