Childhood Cancer Awareness Art After Hours event set for Friday

ATHENS, Ala. – A father who turned to songwriter as a form of encouragement after the loss of his son will be among the artists sharing their talents at a free event on Friday to raise awareness about childhood cancer.

September is Childhood Cancer Awareness Month, and Athens Arts League’s monthly Art After Hours event will use art to honor those in the community who are impacted by childhood cancer. This Art After Hours event will be Sept. 14 from 6-9 p.m. at High Cotton Arts. Washington Street in front of High Cotton Arts will be blocked for vendors and music.

“Art gives children an outlet to deal with their emotions from the joy of a new puppy to the pain of battling childhood cancer. We want to encourage children and adults to be inspired by art and enjoy art opportunities.”

Athens Arts League Board member Holly Hollman

The guest performer will be John David Crowe, whose son, Noah, died from his battle with brain cancer at the age of 4. Crowe is a speaker, songwriter and the creative arts pastor at Friendship United Methodist Church. He also owns Innovative Media Pros.

Crowe uses his creative outlets to share the story of God’s comfort and healing for the broken hearted. According to his website, the songs he has written these last few years will be “a comfort to those who know similar pain, and they will be an encouragement to those who may be on the verge of giving up or who already have given up on their relationship with God.”

When describing his 2015 album Beauty from Ash, Crowe said the death of his son was the hardest chapter of his life.

“The pain from losing a child can destroy every good part of your heart if you let it,” he said. “God gives us hope that He takes broken things, the ashes of our destroyed desires, and He can make them into something beautiful.”

Kristie Williams, who created Eli’s Block Party Childhood Cancer Foundation, will have a booth to provide information about the foundation’s efforts and coloring sheets for children. Williams’ son Eli died at age 12 from brain cancer.

“Kristie started the event Superhero Day in Athens to celebrate our youngest heroes who battle cancer, so we want to encourage those who attend Art After Hours in September to dress as a superhero or wear their favorite superhero T-shirts to show their support,” Hollman said.

Here is a list of activities for September’s Art After Hours:

● Attendees can shop for locally made art among the High Cotton Art’s artists and sign up for art classes. Art pieces include paintings, stained glass, photographs, cards, jewelry and ceramics.

● United Ink Tattoos and Body Piercings in Athens will have a booth to provide free temporary tattoos for children. The tattoos will be superheroes.

● Athens Arts League with assistance from TRAIL provides a student studio at High Cotton Arts. Children are welcome to come create inspirational art for Childhood Cancer Awareness Month to exhibit in the student for September. Art supplies will be provided.

● Sylvia Vann’s Little Kitchen Food Truck will have Cajun dishes and other dishes for sale.

This is the last Art After Hours event of the season. Athens Arts League provides this free community event once a month from April through September to provide access to art opportunities for the area. To learn more about Athens Arts League or how to become an art patron, send an email to