The Kelpie Gallery and Georges River Land Trust have announced the results of the third annual Wet Paint on the Weskeag! benefit auction, held on Aug. 14. The event grossed $16,000.

The proceeds were to be split between the GRLT and the artists; however, several of the artists chose to donate the full amount of the sale of their pieces to the land trust, so the final donation to GRLT totaled $9,225. It will directly support programs that GRLT has established to conserve the lands and waterways in the Georges River Watershed and surrounding service area.

This summer’s event was supported by generous sponsors including lead sponsors Bangor Savings Bank and On the Water Real Estate; auction sponsors Eastern Tire & Auto Service and Shepard Motors; supporting sponsors Brooks Trap Mill, Spruce Head Fishermen’s Co-op and Schooner Bay Taxi; and beverage sponsors Rock Harbor Brewery and Savage Oaks Vineyard & Winery.

In the spring, 30 artists were juried to participate in the paint-out that encompassed the lands around the St. George and Weskeag Rivers under the protection of the land trust. The paintings were sold in an auction at The Kelpie Gallery, presided over by dueling auctioneers Bruce Gamage and Kaja Veilleux, who kept the action lively. All of the pieces went home with happy bidders.

Prizes were awarded to several of the artists by Auction Jurors: noted curator Ron Crusan of Linda Bean's Wyeth Gallery; artist Dick Kelly of the Georges River Land Trust; and Susan Lewis Baines and Lauren Lewis, owners of The Kelpie Gallery. The Jurors’ Choice went to Carol Douglas for her oil on canvas board, “Fort Point Historic Site.”

Three Honorable Mentions were awarded: The Kelpie Gallery Honorable Mention was awarded to Nancy Morgan Barnes for the oil on board “Queen Anne’s Lace, South Thomaston”; the Ron Crusan Honorable Mention went to Stephan Giannini for the oil on canvas “Moonlight Over Weskeag”; and the Georges River Land Trust Honorable Mention was awarded to Michael E. Vermette for the oil on panel “Weskeag from Buttermilk Lane.” The Peoples’ Choice Award was given to Holly Smith for her oil on panel, “August View of Bill’s Island.”

Georges River Land Trust is committed to encouraging citizens to discover the river and care for the land throughout the 14 communities in the Georges River watershed. The Kelpie Gallery, continuing its commitment to support art, conservation and community, announces that next year’s event will be held Aug. 13. Artists interested in participating next year are encouraged to contact the gallery at thekelpiegallery@gmail.com.

The Kelpie Gallery is open year-round. More information will be available on the gallery’s Facebook page and website, thekelpiegallery.com; or by calling 691-0392.

Georges River Land Trust is a 501(c)(3) member-supported nonprofit whose mission is to protect the ecosystems and traditional heritage of the Georges River watershed through permanent land conservation, stewardship, education, and outdoor experiences. For more information visit georgesriver.org, email info@grlt.org or call 594-5166.

Courier Publications’ A&E Editor Dagney C. Ernest can be reached at (207) 594-4401, ext. 115; or dernest@courierpublicationsllc.com.