Sharon Arts Center One of More Than 1300 Organizations in U.S. to Offer Free Benefits and Discounts to Military Personnel and Their Families Summer 2011
Today Sharon Arts Center announced the launch of Blue Star Museums, a partnership with the National Endowment for the Arts, Blue Star Families, and more than 1,300 museums across America to offer free admission and special discounts to all active duty military personnel and their families from Memorial Day through Labor Day 2011. Sharon Arts is pleased to offer member benefits including discounts at Sharon Arts Fine Craft Gallery and discounted tuition at the Sharon Arts School of Art and Craft.
“Sharon Arts Center is proud to participate in Blue Star Museums,” explained Melanie McDonald- Director of Community Outreach & Communications. “Extending a special welcome and benefits to military personnel and their families is a wonderful way we can honor servicemen and woman with the beauty and warmth that art conveys.”
This year, more than 1,324 (and counting) museums in all 50 states, the District of Columbia, Puerto Rico, and American Samoa are taking part in the initiative. This year’s Blue Star Museums represent not just fine arts museums, but also science museums, history museums, nature centers, and 70 children’s museums.
“Blue Star Museums may be the program at the NEA of which I am proudest,” said National Endowment for the Arts Chairman Rocco Landesman. “Blue Star Museums recognizes and thanks our military families for all they are doing for our country, and simultaneously begins young people on a path to becoming life-long museum goers.”
New Hampshire participants include: The Mariposa Museum (Peterborough, NH), Cathedral of the Pines (Rindge, NH), Currier Museum of Art (Manchester, NH) Manchester Artists Association Art Gallery (Manchester, NH), Canterbury Shaker Village (Canterbury, NH), and Strawberry Banke Museum(Portsmouth, NH). The Museum of Fine Arts and the Isabella Stewart Gardner Museum in Boston are among many Massachusetts participants, as well as Brattleboro Museum & Art Center in Vermont. An extensive list of New England participants can be found at www.arts.gov/bluestarmuseums. Leadership support has been provided by MetLife Foundation through Blue Star Families.
“Last year the success of the inaugural year of the Blue Star Museums program showed that partnerships between the nation’s museum and military communities are a natural,” said Blue Star Families Chairman Kathy Roth-Douquet. “We are thrilled that 300,000 military family members visited our partner museums [and organizations] in the summer of 2010. We hope to exceed that number this year as the military community takes advantage of the rich cultural heritage they defend and protect every day. We appreciate the NEA and the nation’s museums who chose to partner with us. We also are grateful to our friends at the MetLife Foundation, the lead supporter of the Blue Star Museums outreach initiative, whose generous donation helps make our work possible.”
About Sharon Arts Center
The mission of Sharon Arts Center, a non-profit organization, is to engage the community in the artistic process, to support and serve artists and craftspeople, and to foster the relationship between artists and the community through education, exhibitions, the promotion and sale of art and craft, as well as through special programs and events.
Sharon Arts Center offers a wide variety of art classes and programs in the school facility in Sharon, NH, a Fine Craft Gallery, a Juried Artist Member Gallery, and an Exhibition Gallery at Depot Square.
The Sharon Arts School is located at 457 Route 123 in Sharon, NH. Classes take place Monday-Thursday from 10am-9pm, Fridays from 10am-4pm, and on select weekend days. The Student Shop is open during school office hours, Monday-Friday 8:30am-4:30pm.
Sharon Arts Center is sponsored in part by The New Hampshire State Council on the Arts, The National Endowment for the Arts through the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act, The Susan A. & Donald P. Babson Charitable Foundation, The Bean Foundation, The Max & Victoria Dreyfus Foundation, The Grimshaw-Gudewicz Charitable Foundation, The Kingsbury Foundation, The Putnam Foundation and art lovers like you!
About Blue Star Museums
Blue Star Museums runs from Memorial Day, May 30, 2011 through to Labor Day, September 5, 2011. The free admission program is available to active-duty military and their immediate family members (military ID holder and five immediate family members). Active duty military include Army, Navy, Air Force, Marines, Coast Guard, and active duty National Guard and active duty Reserve members. Some special or limited-time museum exhibits may not be included in this free admission program. For questions on particular exhibits or museums, please contact the museum directly. To find out which museums are participating, visit www.arts.gov/bluestarmuseums. The site includes a list of participating museums and a map to help with visit planning. Museums that wish to participate in Blue Star Museums may contact email@example.com or Wendy Clark at 202-682-5451.
About Blue Star Families
Blue Star Families is a national, nonpartisan, nonprofit network of military families from all ranks and services, including guard and reserve, with a mission to support, connect and empower military families. In addition to morale and empowerment programs, Blue Star Families raises awareness of the challenges and strengths of military family life and works to make military life more sustainable. Membership includes military spouses, children and parents as well as service members, veterans and civilians.To learn more about Blue Star Families, visit www.bluestarfam.org.
About the National Endowment for the Arts
The National Endowment for the Arts was established by Congress in 1965 as an independent agency of the federal government. To date, the NEA has awarded more than $4 billion to support artistic excellence, creativity, and innovation for the benefit of individuals and communities. The NEA extends its work through partnerships with state arts agencies, local leaders, other federal agencies, and the philanthropic sector. To join the discussion on how art works, visit the NEA at arts.gov.