AU’s Jule Collins Smith Museum to hold annual May Day festivities May 3

AUBURN – The Jule Collins Smith Museum of Fine Art at Auburn University will hold its annual May Day celebration on Saturday, May 3, from 1 p.m. to 4 p.m. with events and activities for all ages. The museum will remain open until 5 p.m.

At 3:30 p.m., the Birmingham-based Umdabu Dance Company will present an African dance performance that will be the highlight of the afternoon. Umdabu dancers will then lead May Day celebrants in a May Pole dance on the south lawn of the museum. Umdabu is a dance theater dedicated to the preservation and presentation of traditional and contemporary South African history and culture.

Activities for children will include papermaking, printmaking, storytelling and drawing. While younger children sail toy boats in the fountain, older students will learn how to make and fly their own kites.

Various activities and displays will focus on nature, the environment and recycling. Using recycled materials provided by Donny Addison, Auburn University Recycle and Waste Reduction Coordinator, children will make paper to be used later in art activities and printmaking. One display will demonstrate the effects of water and the impact of pollution on the environment. At a drawing station, children will try out their drawing skills using what they observe in nature as subjects.

A reading of Dr. Seuss’s book “The Lorax” will inspire students to protect the environment and they will create their own handcrafted trees that will be planted on the museum grounds.

Galleries will be open to the public and visitors will be able to view various exhibitions including “Behind the Mask.” This exhibit leads the viewer through mask-making cultures of western Africa, with a look at how each mask is one element of deeply spiritual rituals that include dance and music.

The museum’s May Day celebration is free and open to the public.

For more information about May Day at the museum and other upcoming events, go to the new Web site at or call (334) 844-1484.

Contact: Andrew Henley, (334) 844-8792 (, or
Mike Clardy, (334) 844-9999 (