Ray Blue: photo by Gulnara Khamatova; The Rye Arts Center: photo by Leslye Smith; The City of Yonkers: photo by Christopher St. Lawrence
The Arts Organization Award:
Historic Hudson Valley
The Historic Hudson Valley serves as a major tourism destination at five National Historic Landmarks in Westchester. Their sites host educational programs for students in kindergarten through high school and also host other public programs such as internships and site-tours.
The Community Awards:
Sills Family Foundation
This foundation has provided for and made a difference for senior citizens and children. It provides creative opportunities and has brought an after-school program to WestHab PEAK, where kids get to creatively explore and express themselves.
The City of Yonkers
Plans have been set to repurpose loft buildings in the Nepperhan area, and create an urban heritage waterfront sculpture. The city is quickly becoming very popular amongst the younger demographic, and in recent years has been the target for public art, music, and theater organization’s artistic revitalization efforts.
Katonah Museum Artists’ Association
For more than 25 years, Katonah Museum Artists’ Association (KMAA) has supported the local artistic community with exhibition opportunities at many community venues. KMAA’s annual exhibitions at Northern Westchester Hospital enhance the healing environment and bring joy to their patients and staff. Additionally, KMAA supports the programs and exhibitions of the Katonah Museum of Art and has partnered with various community arts organizations.
The Sophia Abeles Education Award:
Musician Ray Blue
As the Music Director of Cross-Cultural Connections, Ray Blue has provided Peekskill children the opportunity to enjoy and learn about the arts, through workshops, school residencies, and classes. Blue is also a New York Blues Hall of Fame inductee, whose eclectic sound has landed him performances at major music festivals.
The Education Awards:
Musician Fred Smith
Fred Smith, the former musical director for the Harlem Blues & Jazz Band, has performed with the likes of Houston Person and Hugh Masekela and has backed vocalists such as Aretha Franklin and Harry Belafonte. Additionally, Smith lectures in schools and conducts workshops focused on the history of jazz in America.
Rye Arts Center
Rye Arts Center (RAC)’s offers consistent STEAM (science, technology, engineering, art, and math) classes and workshops, to about 17,000 people. This dedication to the combination of the sciences and are resulted in the opening of a “maker space” that allows visitors to explore science and technology combined with art to spark creativity and innovation.