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TARC seeking bus designs from Louisville-area students

A city bus decorated with children's art
This bus from 2017, when TARC partnered with Trees Louisville on the Design-a-Bus contest, features nature-themed art by local students.

As TARC prepares to celebrate its 50th year of service, officials are inviting students from around Louisville and Southern Indiana to create art that could adorn a bus.

Students at elementary, middle and high schools in Jefferson, Oldham and Bullitt counties in Kentucky, and Floyd and Clark counties in Southern Indiana are eligible to participate.

This is the 24th year of the annual Design-a-Bus contest. The Louisville Science Center is partnering with TARC to promote the theme, “The Periodic Elements of Louisville.”

“We intentionally include art in our Do Science approach to our STEAM [Science, Technology, Engineering, Arts, Mathematics] programs and experiences,” said Mike Norman, CEO of the Kentucky Science Center, in a news release.

Design submissions should represent particular places of importance in students' communities and bring memories from there to life, according to the competition's website.

Submissions can be made with crayon, marker, paint or digital tools, and must be square. Officials said 8-inch or 11-inch squares are preferred. Non-digital designs must be on white paper.

Student artists can submit their applications and designs in PDF or JPEG formats on TARC’s website.

The 12 winning designs — which TARC employees will select — will be featured on buses in the 2024 Pegasus Parade. Those buses will then run regular TARC routes following the Kentucky Derby.

“Design-a-Bus is a wonderful opportunity to get young people in our community excited about public transit and a local treasure like the Kentucky Science Center,” said TARC executive director Carrie Butler in a news release. “Our employees look forward to seeing the hundreds of submissions and selecting the winners, and showcasing the talents of our city’s young artists.”

The deadline to submit entries is Feb. 9.

Support for this story was provided in part by the Jewish Heritage Fund.

News Youth Reporting
Breya Jones is the Arts & Culture Reporter for LPM. Email Breya at bjones@lpm.org.

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