Photo: Elaina Henderlite – Matthews Alive! Poster Art Winner and Jayson Johnson, Executive Director of Matthews Alive! Inc.

Elaina Henderlite is the winner of the 2009 Matthews Alive! Art Contest. Each year the Matthews Alive! Festival organizers host the Poster Art Competition. The art is used on festival posters, t-shirts, event guides and other items related to the annual festival. Artists were asked to design their posters around this year’s theme for the festival “Hometown Matthews – 4 Days or Forever.”

Elaina’s art features the Town’s historic caboose, a marching band and children. Elaina moved to Matthews a year ago from Arizona. She and her husband wanted to escape the desert heat and be near family members. “I was able to attend last year’s Matthews Alive! Festival and the parade, the marching bands, children and just the sense of community here inspired my artwork as well as the Town’s history with the railroad. Now that we live here my son and I visit the caboose regularly. It is one of our favorite things to do,” she said.matthews-alive-art-logo

She received $750 for her winning design. She has already put the money to good use. A portrait and acrylic painter she has started her own business and will have her art on display at the Matthews Artist Guild Show at Matthews Alive!

Elaina and her husband, Michael, have a three year old son, Ashton.

The Matthews Alive! Festival is a four day event September 4-7 in downtown Matthews.

For a complete listing of Matthews Alive! Events go to