This spring, students worked with art teachers, local historians and architects to learn about the different architecture styles of Dubuque’s downtown hotels and inns, study their history and relevance to the city’s cultural and economic development, and create mixed media or 3-D artwork.

The work was part of a new program called “Be Our Guest,” held in conjunction with Main Street Ltd. during the organization’s annual Architecture Days celebration. The program was funded through the Mediacom Arts and Culture grant program submitted by the Foundation for Dubuque Public Schools (FDPS).

This program is a positive, supportive and educational opportunity for elementary students who demonstrate advanced ability in visual arts. The goal is to provide advanced art students from all of Dubuque’s public elementary schools with in-depth, multidimensional instruction that reaches beyond what is available during the normal school day. Bringing students together from diverse neighborhoods gives them an opportunity to learn about each other and forge new friendships based on their shared interests, cooperative learning, and aptitude in art.

The students’ work in the program was featured in a public showcase at the Hotel Julien Dubuque in mid-April.