Local artist lends a hand

The goal of revitalizing the downtown area of Middlesboro in ongoing for Middlesboro Main Street. With the Levitt AMP Your City Music Series just around the corner on July 19 with it’s first show, the organization was lended a helping hand by local artist Christine Hickman Byrd.

Byrd, the daughter of Chris Hickman of Hickman Building Supplies, donated her time and talent to Middlesboro Main Street by creating some art at the Levitt AMP lot, which has gone through various updates in the past months.

Byrd graduated from LMU with Bachelors of Art Education in 2014.

After graduation, she moved to Nashville where she still lives with her husband. She earned her Master of Education in School Counseling and currently works at a local high school as a counselor.

Her senior art project for LMU was featured in the Daily News in 2015 — a collection of various art pieces of Coca-Cola.

When asked why she wanted to volunteer for this project, Byrd stated, “I wanted to give back to the community that gave so much to me.”

“The art piece was inspired because it takes roots to grow a strong community and the various music notes in different colors represent the diversity of our community coming together,” Byrd said.

Emily Ayers, director of Middlesboro Main Street, added “This year’s line-up was carefully chosen to represent our diverse community so that music could bring everyone out to share in a common love and appreciation.”