How #my5days at Hallmark is Renewing, Inspiring, and Giving Back

“It was such joy to walk in with a certain set of expectations and walk away accomplishing far more than I even imagined.” This reaction from a designer at Hallmark Cards, Inc. underlines the spirit of a recent initiative that supports the creative culture at the company that has taken a new turn in 2018. Just two years ago, Hallmark created a program that would lead to new ways of thinking, personal inspiration, and growth for more than 800 members of its creative community. Now, it has grown to benefit nonprofit organizations in its local Kansas City community. Hallmark’s #my5days program offers five work days per year for creative employees to renew, explore, learn, and think differently about the world and work around them. 

Americans for the Arts Presents Award to Community Arts Training Institute of St. Louis for Exemplary Work at Intersection of Arts and Community Life

Saturday, June 16, 2018

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Americans for the Arts today announced that the Community Arts Training Institute (CAT Institute) of St. Louis has been awarded the Robert E. Gard Award. The award recognizes and celebrates exemplary work at the intersection of the arts and community life, and was presented this morning at Americans for the Arts’ Annual Convention in Denver.

A short time spent at Laumeier Sculpture Park can create a lifetime of memories! Use natural materials to construct artworks that change over time. Participate in activities that focus on kinetic, ephemeral and land art. Laumeier’s Free Family Days encourage observation, imagination, curiosity and creativity. Activities are designed to be simple enough for ages 4 and up to enjoy, yet complex enough that more experienced young artists can take their projects to another level.

Enjoy some adult conversation while you learn and play with your baby at Laumeier Sculpture Park! Stretch, walk with the stroller and enhance your family bond. Get fit through the development of fine and gross motor skills with outdoor movement and activities designed for both parent and child. Laumeier’s Pre-K Programs are designed to provide participants with opportunities to explore art and engage with nature through creative and healthy, stress-relieving activities. Registration fee for all Pre-K Programs includes one adult with one child; children must be accompanied by an adult.

Laumeier Sculpture Park offers an all-ages Walking Tour of the Park on the first Sunday of each month, May–October. Laumeier tours are interactive and designed to engage participants in the relationship between art and nature. Tours are led by trained Laumeier Docents and last approximately one hour. Participants are advised to dress appropriately for the season and wear comfortable shoes for walking on uneven pathways. Tour meets Sunday, June 3, at 2:00 p.m. at the Visitor Center in the Aronson Fine Arts Center at Laumeier Sculpture Park, 12580 Rott Road, Saint Louis, Missouri.

Laumeier Sculpture Park’s Night Out Series provides a fun and relaxed, adults-only workshop environment in which to try your hand at working with clay! Learn slab construction and wheel throwing methods and explore surface textures and detailing to create a piece in your own unique style! A bottle of wine and some clay make for a great date night or night out with friends! BYOW (bring your own wine); light snacks are provided. Pick up your finished piece at Laumeier the following week. Friday, May 25, 6:30–9:30 p.m.

Laumeier’s Conversation Series offers free, informal learning opportunities for adult audiences through lectures and discussions about art and nature with staff members, visiting artists and community leaders. Coffee and cocktail events encourage participants to ask questions in a relaxed atmosphere. Refreshments are always provided! Thursday, May 24, 6:00–7:30 p.m. at Laumeier Sculpture Park, 12580 Rott Road, Saint Louis, Missouri. Free, ages 21 and up. Call 314.615.5278 or visit www.laumeier.org for more information.
 

Enjoy some adult conversation while you learn and play with your baby at Laumeier Sculpture Park! Stretch, walk with the stroller and enhance your family bond. Get fit through the development of fine and gross motor skills with outdoor movement and activities designed for both parent and child. Laumeier’s Pre-K Programs are designed to provide participants with opportunities to explore art and engage with nature through creative and healthy, stress-relieving activities. Registration fee for all Pre-K Programs includes one adult with one child; children must be accompanied by an adult.

Make Laumeier Sculpture Park’s Annual Art Fair your Mother’s Day weekend tradition! The Annual Art Fair features local food and beverage vendors, hands-on activities for kids, live music and 150 juried artists from across the country. Rain or shine; no pets or outside food and beverage allowed. Friday, May 11, 6:00–10:00 p.m.; Saturday, May 12, 10:00 a.m.–8:00 p.m.; Sunday, May 13, 10:00 a.m.–5:00 p.m. at Laumeier Sculpture Park, 12580 Rott Road, Saint Louis, Missouri. Admission is $10; Laumeier Members and ages 10 and under are free.

Laumeier Sculpture Park offers outdoor Walking Tours of the Park on the first Sunday of each month, May–October. Laumeier tours are interactive and designed to engage participants in the relationship between art and nature. Tours are led by trained Laumeier Docents and last approximately one hour. Participants are advised to dress appropriately for the season and wear comfortable shoes for walking on uneven pathways. Tour meets Sunday, May 6, at 2:00 p.m. at the Visitor Center in the Aronson Fine Arts Center at Laumeier Sculpture Park, 12580 Rott Road, Saint Louis, Missouri.

Enjoy some adult conversation while you learn and play with your baby at Laumeier Sculpture Park! Stretch, walk with the stroller and enhance your family bond. Get fit through the development of fine and gross motor skills with outdoor movement and activities designed for both parent and child. Laumeier’s Pre-K Programs are designed to provide participants with opportunities to explore art and engage with nature through creative and healthy, stress-relieving activities. Registration fee for all Pre-K Programs includes one adult with one child; children must be accompanied by an adult.

Laumeier Sculpture Park offers Walking Tours of the indoor exhibition, plus the outdoor Museum Circle, on the first Wednesday of each month. Laumeier tours are interactive and designed to engage participants in the relationship between art and nature. Tours are led by trained Laumeier Docents and last approximately one hour. Participants are advised to dress appropriately for the season and wear comfortable shoes for walking on uneven pathways. Tour meets Wednesday, May 2, at 10:30 a.m.

Build a house for a bird family while you spend quality time with your own family at Laumeier Sculpture Park! Learn simple design principles and building techniques to construct a small dwelling for a fine, feathered friend. Take a hike and learn how to identify local backyard birds, then return to the studio to put the finishing touches on your piece. Multi-generational workshops are a collaborative way for families to spend quality and creative time together. Children—along with a favorite grownup!—explore art and nature, develop a meaningful bond and create memories to last a lifetime.

Preparing Your Organization and Your Donors for Shifts in the Charitable Tax Deduction

On January 1, the 2018 Tax Cuts & Jobs Act went into effect, a substantial change to the U.S. tax code which has the potential to negatively impact arts and culture nonprofit organizations in a variety of ways. One of the most significant impacts will come in changes related to the thresholds and amounts associated with the charitable tax deduction. This 100-year-old provision was designed to stimulate giving to charities and other organizations serving the public good by providing an opportunity to claim a deduction as a reduction in an individual’s tax burden. While the repercussions of the federal tax code changes are still emerging, and corresponding shifts in state-by-state tax policy may impact your situation, the notes that follow are an introductory primer. If you have questions about state-level implications, we recommend you reach out to your state comptroller or state association of nonprofits.

Arts Advocacy Day Is Coming

Although years may really just be a number, in its 31 years, Arts Advocacy Day has seen six different U.S. presidents spanning both political parties. It’s witnessed sixteen different congressional sessions and eight different Speakers of the U.S. House. Through it all, every year, attendees hear that “the arts are bipARTtisan.” Because, no matter who’s in office, arts advocacy matters. Funding decisions are made every year. Who’s deciding this year may not be deciding next year. Who’s to remember what happened before? Who’s to know why it matters? Who’s to learn from each other? The answer is us. All of us. All of us together.

Americans for the Arts Joins Federal Amicus Brief in Support of Free Speech Rights of Congressional Art Competition Student Artist

Americans for the Arts joined 17 national, state, and local arts service organizations urging reversal of a ruling that permitted Architect of the Capitol Stephen Ayers to remove a painting by St. Louis high school student David Pulphus from a Congressional Art Competition exhibit at the U.S. Capitol. His allegorical post-Ferguson painting depicts a civil rights demonstration and includes two police officers with boar heads; one is pointing his gun at a protester with the head of wolf. The painting was removed under pressure from a small group of Congressmen, with the contention that the exhibition was “government speech” which the government could censor at will. 

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