Tuesday, May 1, 2012

So what is the Monmouth Festival of the Arts?

Volunteering is hard work. Really hard work. When I have volunteered, I worked harder on those projects sometimes than I did at my full time job. I volunteered because I had a serious passion for the mission of the organization for which I offered my time, talents, and skills.  Recognition for your work in such an organization is priceless. That is why in 2009, I nominated the Monmouth Festival of the Arts (particularly Arlene Berg, Gayle Horvath and Alice Berman as chairs of the event) for an Art Educators of New Jersey’s John J. Pappas Recognition Award. The volunteers are generous, kind and welcoming. This is one of the most organized events in the county – all run by volunteers from the Reform Temple. The Monmouth Festival of the Arts brings unique perspectives to professional interactions in the art community and arts education community in Monmouth County, NJ. During the festival, which is about 4 days, attendees can enjoy the variety of art on display from more than 300 artists who hail from all over the Northeast. They can also attend several workshops given by the artists on the technique of their craft as well as an evening artists’ lecture series. Sunday is family day, featuring children’s craft workshops and entertainment. The Festival also offers an educational symposium for teachers to earn continuing education credits. (As a side note, this was my very first symposium as an art educator and holds a special place in my heart). Additionally, there is a student artist display, which heralds the artwork of 11th grade students who competed for awards earlier. For 42 years, the Monmouth Festival of the Arts has created a yearly public art show that commemorates generative moments in the history of their community. They have facilitated processes that help people dream their way into new approaches to community and arts awareness. By providing 
opportunities for people to express themselves, learn new skills, build confidence and enrich 
personal experience, they have increased awareness of the arts and art education for central New Jersey.
I am honored to a part of this exhibit – both as an exhibiting artist and as a volunteer who will be giving a demonstration. Please consider joining the party on Saturday and celebrate with this wonderful group of artists, volunteers, and art lovers! 

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