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Gov. Norm Bangerter has proclaimed September as "Utah Arts Month." To help celebrate, several local art groups have collaborated for a sidewalk chalk competition on the plaza of the Salt Lake Art Center. Teams of kids from local schools and organizations will be designing and drawing sidewalk murals about the theme "City of Dreams." The event is designed for kids to participate in arts education in action. It is set for Friday, Sept. 25, from 3-7 p.m. Winning teams will be awarded art supplies and artists' residencies for their programs.

Teams registered for the competition include elementary through high school students, a group from Neighborhood Housing Services and a group of Russian children working with the Learning Loft.For more information, call the Salt Lake City Arts Council, 596-5000. In case of rain, the event will be held the following Friday, Oct. 2.

- The Brigham City Museum-Gallery has planned a debate about freedom of expression on Thursday, Sept. 24, at 7:30 p.m. Eight panelists will be participating: Fred Gedicks, BYU law professor; Rob Bishop, state legislator; Barry Gomberg, attorney; Teddy Griffith, director of Ogden's Union Station; Beth Gurrister, Constitution advocate; Kathryn Kendall, history/social studies teacher; Bonnie Stephens, director of the Utah Arts Council; and H. Preston Thomas, USU political science and law professor.

The gallery is located at 24 N. 300 West, Brigham City, 723-6769.

- Oil painter Steve McGinty will host two showings of his work - one in ZCMI's downtown store on Friday, Sept. 25, from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m., and the second in ZCMI's Cottonwood Mall on Saturday. Sept. 26, from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m.

McGinty says he admires the spontaneity and light of the Impressionists and the rich value of the Old Masters. "I have taken the strengths of those two schools to help create my own style," he explains.

The artist loves painting outdoors. "The sounds, smells and entire atmosphere play an integral part in capturing the true emotion in each of my paintings."