By Noelle H. Lowery
When Hyla Crane took the reins at the Marco Island Center for the Arts, one of her goals was to expand programming for the island’s younger demographic, and thanks to a partnership with the city’s Parks and Recreation Department, that goal is now a reality.
Together, the two entities are offering seven summer art enrichment camps at the Center for the Arts. Beginning June 16, children ages 8-15 will be able to draw, paint, sculpt, photographer, play music and dance their way through the dog days of summer.
Crane reached out to Marco Island Recreation Manager Mindy Gordon with the idea. “We met, and (Hyla) spoke about her passion for bringing the Art Center back to a youthful stance,” explains Gordon. “She was able to create seven new art workshop programs, and with our help in marketing, transportation needs, and registration necessities, we were able to create a new series of art workshop programs.”
“This is a good way for us to work together,” Crane adds. “It was a natural fit. We were interested in offering programming for children, and Parks and Rec is one of the go-to places on the island for children. Parks and Rec is limited in terms of space, and we have workshop space that is not necessarily occupied in the summer.”
Crane has enlisted a cadre of the Center’s finest artists to participate in the camps, including Mary Kane, Linda Kropp, Ginny Mueller, Miriam Jacobs, Kim Adamson and Jason Reinhart. Programming will include “Play with Clay,” “Acrylic Collage,” “Mythical Magical Creatures,” “Creating Art with Nature,” “iPhone Photography,” “Strut Your Stuff” and “Make and Learn to Play Your Own Guitar.” All budding artists will get to show off their work at the Art Center’s main gallery on July 25 at 5:30 PM at the “Youth Summer Arts Reception.”
Those interested in participating in the art summer camps must pre-register at Mackle Park. A full listing of the art programs and other summertime activities for children can be found in CBN’s May 16-29, 2014, issue.
“Marco Island Parks and Recreation is very excited for this new partnership and all of the artistic programming that will be offered this upcoming summer,” notes Gordon.
According to Crane, this is just the beginning. The Art Center recently received new grant funding that will allow it to hold Saturday workshops geared toward kids as well. “This is a growing effort to find programming that reaches out to young people,” Crane says. “This is something we will be doing in every way, shape and form. We are starting on the island and will go over the bridge to reach other kids who will benefit from arts programs.”