Welcome to the New Year!
If you're reading this, congratulations! This means that you survived the rumored end of the world, which was scheduled to take place on December 21, 2012.
Now it's 2013. Phew. Welcome to the New Year!
If you're anything like me, you're celebrating your survival by making New Year's resolutions that you probably won't keep, eating a lot of delicious food, and enjoying the company of friends and family members. If that's the case, no one can really argue that the New Year isn't off to a good start. Right?
At Laurel Arts, we're as prepared for the New Year as we'll ever be. We've got tons to look forward to: a film night at Rockwood Mill Shoppes and Opera House, Soundstage nights, new classes, and more. This year is sure to be filled with exciting events and opportunities, and my staff and I promise to work hard to bring you as many of those artistic, educational, and entertaining events and opportunities as possible.
That said, I invite each and every one of you to accept a small challenge. The challenge, you ask? Try to get someone involved at Laurel Arts this year: a friend, neighbor, relative, or even a family of four with small children who want to dance; you have the ability to help Laurel Arts grow and reach out to other people in our community. We would love to see more community members visit our galleries and see what Laurel Arts has to offer because, well, we offer a lot.
A top-notch preschool program, a second-to-none dance program, year-round exhibits, exercise classes . . . there's certainly no shortage of things to do at the Philip Dressler Center for the Arts and the Education and Dance Center. Despite these difficult economic times, we want the people of Somerset County to know that we're here for them; we provide thousands upon thousands of dollars in scholarships so that children and adults can take the classes that they may not otherwise be able to afford.
Feel free to spread the word when it comes to how affordable it is to get involved at Laurel Arts! Sometimes all it takes is a Facebook post, a tweet on Twitter, or a conversation over coffee to get someone interested in our organization. It may sound like a small deed, but it would still be a good deed.
Looking back on 2012 is something that I considered doing in this column, but I think that 2013 should be all about positivity and progress. We have over 300 days to grow, learn, and make the most of this New Year before it passes us by. I hope you use this year to gain insight and inspiration from the world around you and then you feel compelled to share that with us.
The great thing about our non-profit organization is that we're always looking for new ideas. Is there a class you want to take but don't see it listed in this newsletter? Call us and we'll try to make that class happen. Is there an artsy club or group you want to start? Call us and we'll try to help you. Is there a band you'd like to see on one of our stages at Somerfest? Give us some details and we'll consider them for the line-up. I want to remind our patrons and members that we are here to serve you (not to mention your families, friends, etc.), so anything that we can do to make your local arts center a more appealing place is most likely an appealing idea to us.
Thank you for your support and interest. Laurel Arts wouldn't be here without it. And of course, best wishes for a New Year full of good food, good conversations, good friends, and, as the Beach Boys would say, "good vibrations."
Thank goodness we all survived.
~ Mike Oliver
P.O. Box 414 • Somerset, PA • 15501