Doors galore on display in Beloit

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Staff photo by Shaun Zinck

"Summer Flower Garden" painted by Ingrid Dohm sits by the Gantry on State Street. Nearly 50 doors were painted by local artists and they will be displayed all throughout Beloit this summer. The doors are part of Visit Beloit's "Knock On Our Door" campaign to encourage tourists to come to the city.

Three isn’t enough company for Visit Beloit.

The organization wants everyone to enjoy its latest project, “Knock on Our Door.” The campaign is getting ready to kick-off this month, and part of the campaign includes old doors from the Ironworks Hotel painted in a variety of styles by local artists.

Nearly 50 painted doors will be set up around the city and a few in South Beloit, said Monica Krysztopa, executive director of Visit Beloit.

Visit Beloit is working with the Beloit Public Works Department and Christofferson Moving and Storage to transport and set up the doors.

The plan is to kick-off the campaign on June 20 during Fridays in the Park in the afternoon and Music and More at Harry’s Place in the evening. Visit Beloit created a video to show at the kick-off. The video shows one of the painted doors “coming to life” and exploring Beloit. A parody of “Come and Knock on Our Door” from the sitcom “Three’s Company” is featured in the video.

In addition to the video, Visit Beloit also will be encouraging people to take photos of the doors and post them to the social media site Instagram. Maps will be given out on June 20 with the door locations and numbers, Krysztopa said.

So far about 30 doors have been installed with about 16 left to go, she said on Monday. A list of 48 locations was made up to place the doors. The locations are mainly on city property and include city hall, the Gantry, the Library and Water Street near the Post Office. Several doors are up around Riverside Park as well.

Five doors were painted by artists from Illinois, and will be set up in South Beloit, Krysztopa said. Most are painted by local artists, but a few were painted by students from Beloit schools and other organizations such as the Beloit Fine Arts Incubator. Each door has a plaque attached listing the title and the name of the artist.

One door, titled “Tigers, Tigers Everywhere!” was painted by students at Townview Elementary School and is featured on Water Street near the Post Office.

Krysztopa said officials from Visit Beloit and Friends of the Riverfront were brainstorming ideas on what to do with the doors. An idea was brought up to use local artists to paint the doors and feature them around Beloit.

“I have gotten such positive feedback from this,” Krysztopa said. “We’ve gotten lots of calls and emails from people who love this idea.”

The artists finished painting their doors around the end of May and Christofferson Moving and Storage has transported all the doors back to the Vision Beloit building. The Public Works Department worked with Battermans to develop a way to secure the doors into the ground.

The doors will be up until the end of August.

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