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Second Annual Community Arts Day

Resurgence City presents here the text of a press release issued by the Newark Museum about a yearly interorganizational arts celebration in Newark. We got this very late, secondhand, and will endeavor to alert our visitors to next year's event well in advance. Following that press release, we present the text of our Webmaster's email to Governor McGreevey on proposed cuts to public funding of the arts.

Newark's Downtown Arts Organizations Team Up For Second Annual Community Arts Day, Saturday, April 12, 2003, 12:00 Noon to 5:00 p.m.

The Newark Cultural Arts District proudly presents its second annual Community Arts Day on Saturday, April 12, 2003, from 12 Noon to 5:00 p.m. The Newark Cultural Arts District consists of the following cultural institutions: The Newark Museum, New Jersey Performing Arts Center (NJPAC), New Jersey Symphony Orchestra (NJSO), The New Jersey Historical Society (NJHS), WBGO Jazz 88.3 FM-Newark Public Radio, the Newark Public Library and the City of Newark Division of Recreation and Cultural Affairs. The activities, listed below, will be held at these various cultural institutions.

Each organization will host a variety of fun-filled arts, science and history activities throughout the day to introduce, and in many cases, re-introduce Newark's cultural resources to New Jersey residents and beyond. The events, which range from family workshops and guided gallery tours to storytelling and jazz concerts, are open to children and adults of all ages. Although most events are free of charge, there is a minimal fee for some.

The proposed elimination of state funding for all arts and history organizations by Governor James E. McGreevey has been met with resounding cries of opposition from the cultural arts community who have rallied together to support the reinstatement of all state funds. "Events like Community Arts Day show just how vital the arts are to our daily lives. Sometimes we forget, or just plain take for granted that the arts will always be there. The current threat to state funding for arts and history groups reveals just how fragile * and precious * they really are," commented Linwood Oglesby, Executive Director of the Newark Arts Council.

Most of the events for Community Arts Day are conveniently located within walking distance, and representatives from the Newark Cultural Arts District will be on-hand to provide information on their members' organizations.

SCHEDULE OF COMMUNITY ARTS DAY EVENTS

The New Jersey Historical Society, 52 Park Place, Newark, NJ; (973) 596-8500, www.jerseyhistory.org
All programs are free and open to the public.

"Hats Off to Community Arts" 12:00 Noon to 4:00 p.m. Drop in at any time! We all wear different hats. Explore our exhibitions, Resource-Full New Jersey, Pilgrims, Patriots and Products: Selling the Colonial Image, and Coming Up on the Season: Migrant Farmworkers in the Northeast, to learn about different hats worn from colonial times to the present, as well as the different roles people play in our everyday lives. Then, use art supplies to create your own hat to wear! End your visit by using Jersey-grown fruits and vegetables to make a special Spring snack!

"Library Open House" Tours begin at 1:00 p.m, 2:00 p.m. and 3:00 p.m. Take a behind-the-scenes tour of the research library and some of the special collections that can be used to delve into the Garden State's fascinating history.

"Walking Tours" Tours begin at 1:30 p.m., 2:30 p.m. and 3:30 p.m. Meet in lobby of NJHS. Explore the rich and colorful history of the downtown area during this guided walking tour that highlights the magnificent architecture and public art of grand old Newark.

THE NEWARK MUSEUM, 49 Washington Street, (973) 596-6550, www.newarkmuseum.org
All programs, unless otherwise noted, are FREE with suggested Museum donation.

"Great Pots Family Celebration" 1:00 p.m. to 4:00 p.m. Drop in at any time! Great Pots: Contemporary Ceramics from Function to Fantasy Get fired up and take a spin on the potter's wheel. Coil and pinch a pot of your own as you learn the science of clay from potter and teacher John Watts.

"Gallery Tours" 1:00 p.m. to 3:30 p.m.

"Arts Workshop"-Spring Cleaning 1:00 p.m. and 2:30 p.m. Visitors explore two works of art in the Picturing America galleries and then create their own artwork. "Mini Zoo Matters Workshop"-Animal Travel 1:00 p.m. to 4:00 p.m. Visitors discover the secrets of how animals move. They learn how snakes slide on the ground without the use of their arms and legs or how some birds have adapted to fly.

"Dynamic Earth: Revealing Nature's Secrets" 12:00 Noon to 5:00 p.m. Discover Earth's mysteries in our new Victoria Hall of Science. Peer into the very core of the planet, see a volcano blow its top, create your own fossil rubbings in a geologically-correct cave, explore the skeletal remains of an ancient New Jersey mastodon, and much more.

Planetarium 12:00 Noon to 5:00 p.m. $3, adults; $2, children under 12, seniors, and college students with valid ID

"Our Place in Space" 1:00 p.m. and 3:00 p.m. In this new program, Scarlet the macaw needs help to solve a crossword puzzle about where we live in space. Follow Scarlet and a host of endangered animals as they explore the cause of day and night, the importance of our star, the sun or the beauty of the constellations and other objects that make up the Universe. Discover your place in space!

"Skywatchers of Africa" 2:00 p.m. and 4:00 p.m. This new program leads visitors on an exciting exploration of Africa and its peoples' captivating cultural uses of the sky over thousands of years. This show highlights the diversity of African cultural astronomy and celebrates our shared human experience.

FREE EXHIBIT "Impacts: Asteroids, Comets, and Meteorites" 12:00 Noon to 5:00 p.m. Asteroids and comets are the most numerous, yet enigmatic objects in the Solar System. They are left over debris from its formation and may be the key to unraveling the mystery of how planets are born. Come explore these fascinating objects in the Planetarium Gallery. Impacts will feature photos, models, meteorites, and hands-on activities.

THE NEW JERSEY PERFORMING ARTS CENTER, One Center Street, Newark, NJ 1(888) GO-NJPAC, www.njpac.org. Free tours of NJPAC, 12:00 Noon to 1:00 p.m.

"Where the Wild Things Are" 2:00 p.m. $18, adults; $9, children (SOLD OUT) This magical ballet, based on the classic children's story by author and illustrator Maurice Sendak, is told through the eyes of young Max, who is sent to bed without any supper for behaving like a "wild thing." Confined to his bedroom, he has fantastical dreams about a forest ruled by "wild things" - all danced by ten-foot-tall puppets! Stunningly choreographed by Septime Webre, with awe-inspiring sets and costumes designed by Sendak himself, this is a massive and enchanting production full of animated scenery and zany characters that spring from the page to the stage!

THE NEWARK PUBLIC LIBRARY, 5 Washington Street, Newark, NJ; (973) 733-7784, www.npl.org
All programs are free and open to the public.

Take your picture with Corky, the Kid's Place Mascot! 12:00 Noon to 1:30 p.m.

"Hooray for Children!" Saturday Programs for Kids 2:00 p.m. Celebrate the 100th anniversary of "The Tale of Peter Rabbit," featuring Peter, Flopsy, Mopsy and Cottontail and their adventures in Mr. MacGregor's garden.

THE NEW JERSEY SYMPHONY ORCHESTRA at NJPAC, One Center Street, 1 (800) ALLEGRO, www.njsymphony.org

Humperdink's "Hänsel and Gretel" 2:00 p.m. $18, $13 tickets available Sit back and enjoy this classic Brothers Grimm fairy tale. In this semi-staged production, the NJSO and a troupe of talented young performers will recreate this wondrous story before your eyes! -more- From 1:20 p.m. to 1:45 p.m. the Newark Early Strings will be participating in a pre-concert "Fiddle Fest" in the NJPAC lobby. Listen as more than 50 young Newark fiddlers make music for your entire family!

WBGO at East Orange Public Library, 54 Park Place, East Orange, NJ; (973) 624-8880, www.wbgo.org. Admission is free .

"Children's Jazz Concert", featuring vocalist Roseanna Vitro, 12:30 p.m. at East Orange Public Library, 2nd Floor, 21 South Arlington Avenue, East Orange, NJ.
This concert series has entertained thousands of kids over the years. Come and learn about jazz in a fun and entertaining setting with Ms. Vitro, the jazz vocal instructor for the Jazz for Teens Program conducted by the New Jersey Performing Arts Center (NJPAC), and co-sponsored by WBGO.

ABOUT THE NEWARK MUSEUM
The Newark Museum, located at 49 Washington Street in the Downtown/Arts District of Newark, New Jersey, is open Wednesdays through Sundays, from 12:00 noon-5:00 p.m. Suggested donation: Adults, $5.00; Children, Seniors and Students, $2.00. Members are admitted free. The Museum Café is open Wednesdays through Sundays 12:00 Noon- 3:30 p.m. Attended parking is available for a nominal fee in the adjacent lot. For general information, call (973) 596-6550 or visit our web site, http://www.newarkmuseum.org. The Newark Museum, a not-for-profit museum of art, science and education, receives operating support from the City of Newark, the State of New Jersey, the New Jersey State Council on the Arts/Department of State and corporate, foundation and individual donors. Funds for acquisitions and activities other than operations are provided by members and other contributors

Our Webmaster's email to New Jersey's Governor on proposed elimination of state funding to the arts.

Message sent by feedback form to Governor McGreevey April 4, 2003 (and to people below in state government by separate email later):

ALTHOUGH I do not approve of funding elitist arts programs (e.g., the opera) at the expense of the poor, New Jersey cannot afford to be regarded by its neighbors and outsiders as an uncultured swamp that has nothing to offer people of culture. Institutions like the Newark Museum (a) have outreach and educational programs that bring schoolchildren and, especially importantly, kids from culturally deprived homes to see a wider and more vibrant world, which takes the edge off what can be grim streets, and brings beauty and hope into what can be grim lives; (b) draw visitors to an area they might never otherwise visit -- and thus boost New Jersey tourism; and (c) improve the reputation of New Jersey in a crucial field when businessmen are considering where to locate new facilities in the Tristate Metropolitan Area, in thinking of the kind of employees they will be able to draw to those facilities given the amenities nearby -- and thus do the arts also boost economic development.

Therefore I urge you to consider a generous subsidy to the arts as an extremely modest investment that can make hugely outsize, if not even immeasurable, contributions to the economy and livability of our state. Subsume the Council on the Arts under the [education,] tourism and/or economic development budgets, because arts do matter to the viability of New Jersey as a place where people with money and prospects want to live, and to the livability of our communities.

To savage the arts is not just barbarous; it is also fiscally irresponsible. Cordially, L. Craig Schoonmaker, Webmaster, Resurgence City Website, Newark, NJ

A copy of this message was also sent to key officials in the New Jersey State Legislature. You might want to speak your own thoughts to them:

senjames@njleg.org, senbennett@njleg.org, sencodey@njleg.org.

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