As the year draws to a close, and as director of CNY Arts Center, I get to reflect on all that has happened in a year that ended on an upswing!
We have a new partnership with Cayuga Community College, a brand new stage and beautiful gallery with lots of parking and easy access.
We have a treasured relationship with downtown business folks that have kept us going in lean times and continue to support our efforts to have an arts presence there.
We’ve had two fantastic Kids Onstage productions with the brightest and best kids of Central New York and their hard-working parents, having an impact on more than 75 children.
We’ve been honored to have some of the finest local theater professionals grace our stage and three theater companies came together to bring Shakespeare to life last summer.
We have nurtured new artists and new authors and new relationships among artists.
We saw new faces in Arty Camp and added winter and spring recess to our Arts Education programming.
We jumped on board to help nurture the Community School and launched an Art Club.
We hosted local recording artists to give them an outlet to promote their music.
And just last week, we were awarded a grant to pursue still more dreams and visions.
But behind every success was an ever-evolving army of volunteers.
In our move to the new facility, volunteers spent days, weeks, sorting and packing, taping and labeling.
Still others came and moved us – in the rain!
More volunteers arrived to help vacuum and set up the new space, build shelves, build the new stage, paint everything (with donated paint, thank you!), and create a beautiful space out of what has been so generously loaned to us.
And the parents of both Wonka and Oz casts stepped up, donated time and materials and encouragement to build and paint sets, make costumes and props and coach young actors on their lines, sell tickets and promote the show and ensure a rousing success for their children, and for us – CNY Arts Center.
Countless hours and dedication are credited to key members whether it is coordinating the gallery or writing grants or keeping the books or raising funds, or just showing up with coffee to keep us all going.
And once a week, we still meet like we’ve done since the very first letter to the editor almost four years ago.
New people come from time to time, the regulars continue to plan events and step up to volunteer for whatever needs doing.
I am humbled and grateful more than I can express for the passion and encouraging participation of this community.
It’s my privilege to acknowledge the heart and commitment of an army of volunteers who continue to show up!
And I say with the utmost sincerity – thank you! It’s amazing what you have accomplished!
CNY Arts Center