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Christina's Story

During this Season of Light, your generosity provides a place for children, teens, and adults to find connection and healing through creativity and community.

To our friends of the Newberry Arts Center,

I go by NAC every day when taking my dog on a walk, and I’m eager to peer through the window because I’m bound to see something happening at all times. Artists bent over pottery, intently working the clay with their hands. A group of friends crowded around a table, painting together at a party. Students watching a teacher demonstrating techniques at the front of the room. Shoppers with locally made gifts exiting the artisan shop in the sunshine, all smiles and laughter.

Just how much is going on? NAC hosted approximately 70 classes for more than 500 students of all ages throughout the year, including 14 summer camps for ages 5-17. And in the Artisan Shop, where we showcase the work of more than 40 local artists, we welcomed more than 4,230 visitors, including some from 41 states and 6 countries!

NAC is truly bursting at the seams with activity, and it’s not just in our Main Street footprint—we’re out in the community too. We served 81 kids this summer through “Art in the Park” with free art activities over six weeks in our neighborhood parks. We brought Aunt Pearlie Sue, a Gullah performer, to Newberry to teach storytelling to children. Through a partnership between CREATE and the Newberry Opera House, Aunt Pearlie Sue and the Gullah Choir gave a performance for the community. In addition, we brought in several teaching artists to enhance our summer art camps and offset the cost of many classes to make them more affordable.

We believe it’s important that everyone in our community can take part. We provided adults and children with 28 scholarships for our art programs so cost would not be a barrier for anyone to learn and create. Our partnership with the Haven Newberry allowed middle and high school students to create a mural that represented their vision of Newberry, while another group learned about media literacy and made a documentary of the creative process. The mural is traveling to different schools and places in our community.

The activity and energy of NAC always fill my heart with gratitude and pride when I walk by. Your support can continue to grow those opportunities in 2024 so we can reach even more of the Newberry community and beyond. Click on the link below to be a part of what’s happening at NAC:

Your tax-deductible gift to CREATE Newberry will make a difference in the Newberry community through the arts. And next time you’re walking by, come in and see what’s happening!

Warmly, Christina Henricks 2023 Board Chair, CREATE Newberry

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