Fort Bragg can claim two of the four Mendocino Art Council 2009 “Art Champions” awards just announced: Dana Gray Elementary School for the Education Award and Harvest Market for the Business Award. The awards presentation will be held at 10:30 a.m. Tuesday, Oct. 27, at the Mendocino County Board of Supervisors meeting in Ukiah. An Arts Council reception will follow. They are open to the public.
Why They Were Honored
Harvest Market was honored in the category of Business Champion for the Arts. Harvest Market has supported the arts locally through monetary contributions as well as through donations of food, and food discounts for concerts. Recipients of their generosity include the Mendocino Music Festival, Gloriana Musical Theatre, Mendocino Theatre Company, Symphony of the Redwoods, MUSE and many other nonprofit organizations on the coast. In their nomination, a community member writes, “Harvest Market and its owners and workers understand that the arts are an important part of the cultural life of Mendocino County and that arts also contribute to the vitality of our local economy.”
Dana Gray Elementary School in Fort Bragg is being honored for actively integrating the arts in its curriculum. Despite the challenges that face many public schools, students at Dana Gray Elementary are offered educational opportunities in music, visual arts, poetry/literary arts and performing arts. According to a community member, “The arts program at Dana Gray doesn’t just happen by accident. The principal, teachers, staff members, and PTA all work together to make sure that every student gains artistic enrichment and skills as a basic part of their education.” Dana Gray Elementary School provides an inspiring example of what a school can do to foster arts through assemblies, exhibitions of student work, and setting aside a “Fine Arts Night” to give recognition to student artists and musicians.
The Mendocino County Art Champion awards are annually presented in October to coincide with National Arts and Humanities Month. National Arts and Humanities Month is a coast-to-coast collective celebration of culture in America, dedicated to giving millions of Americans the opportunity to explore new facets of the arts and humanities in their lives and encourage them to begin a lifelong habit of active participation. To learn more about National Arts and Humanities Month, visit the website for Americans for the Arts at <http://www.americansforthearts.org> or the website for the California Arts Council at <http://www.cac.ca.gov> .
For more information on the awards, go to http://www.artsmendocino.org/html/articles097ArtChampAnnounce09.htm or call (707) 961-5449.