Clinton student uses art and creativity to help make a difference


CLINTON — A sophomore at Clinton Central School is using her “stay-at-home” time and a bit of artistic creativity to say, “thank you” to the heroes on the front lines, while also helping out neighbors in need during the current COVID-19 crisis.

Abbey Notar designed her own, “Stay Strong 2020” logo, featuring a lovingly-decorated facial mask and sanitary gloves. With the help of mom and dad Judy and Michael Notar, they printed about 500 magnets to be sold to raise money for the Country Pantry in Clark Mills and the Utica Food Pantry.

The 4-inch by 6-inch magnets are being sold for $5 each.

Recently Abbey sat down to talk about her project, and what she hopes to inspire through the sales of her magnets.

Question: How did you come up with your magnet idea?

Abbey: “The original idea for this design was to put it on T-shirts, but we realized that would be a little too expensive, so we thought magnets would be a better choice."

Question: Are the magnets meant for cars?

Abbey: “Yes! We actually made them the size they are (4-by-6 inches) so they could be seen well on a car, but they’ll work just as well on a fridge, locker or anything metal, really."

Question: What was the inspiration for your design and message?

Abbey: "The inspiration behind my design and message was definitely the first responders that are on the scene helping people. I wanted to incorporate the masks and gloves they wear every day in order to help those in need, as well as portray a simple, but positive message."

Question: Why did you choose for proceeds to go to the food pantry?

Abbey: “The big reason I chose for the proceeds to go to the food pantry was because we were hearing about how they were constantly running out of food, and I figured it would be a great place for the money to go."

Question: Have you presented any of the proceeds yet?

Abbey: “No, we’re still selling!"

Question: You said you’ve printed about 500 magnets; do you plan to make more if sales go strong?

Abbey: “I’d love to make more. If sales go well we’ll definitely make more. I might event draw up a new design."

Question: Why did you feel it was important to do something like this?

Abbey: “I felt right now there are so many negative things going on in this world, it’s really important to spread a positive message to help people persevere."

Question: How has online learning and adjusting to “new norms” been going, and what advice would you give other teens your age, out there, going through this difficult time right now?

Abbey: “Adjusting has been a little harder than I thought it would be, I definitely miss my friends a lot, but I know a lot of other kids have it harder, so I don’t dwell too much on it. The advice I would give to other kids my age would be just keep going, we’ll be back to normal soon enough, and this won’t last forever."

Question: Do you know what you plan to major in for college yet, or what schools you’re considering?

Abbey: “My plan right now is to major in graphic design. My top pick for a school at the moment is Pratt Institute (Munson-Williams Proctor in Utica)."

Question: Are you involved in art in school?

Abbey: “Yes! This year I took an AP (Advanced Placement) art class. I joined OVA (Olympics of Visual Arts), and I did art club — I plan to do all three again next year!"

Question: What other activities/hobbies are you involved in?

Abbey: “Besides drawing, writing is a close-second favorite activity for me, but I also love collecting gems and rocks, and I joined drama club this year. Sadly, the day after our first meeting my school was closed, but I plan on joining next year too."

Question: Mom or dad, How do you feel about your daughter taking on this project, and what are you doing to help?

Judy Notar: “Of course we are incredibly proud of her, she really doesn’t need much help. But we are helping her deliver the magnets and keep track of payments."

Question: How can people buy magnets?

Abbey: “Currently we accept payments through my mom’s PayPal account, They are $5 each or three for $12."


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