By Art from Ashes Staff
CityHeART monthly art night provides community oriented space for creating and enjoying art, music, and poetry.
Like most great things at CityHeART, the new Art from Ashes Art Night came to be somewhat accidentally.
CityHeART team members David Dabiri, Izzy Matos, & Paige Pelonis along with Veteran Peer Access Network Battle Buddy Audrey Champ were wrapping up a long day and casually chatting about ways to incorporate more art and music and poetry into the space they call affectionately, The Hub.
“We had been hearing from a lot of guests at The Hub that they wanted more opportunities to do art projects or listen to music or write, and I had been keeping the thought on the back burner and thinking we were already overloaded and too busy to add anything else to our plates right now,” CityHeART Executive Director Paige Pelonis said. “And then, that afternoon, it was way past close of business, we were all wiped out, and David and Audrey just started talking about music and how cool it would be if we had a CityHeART band or something like that. Naturally, Izzy jumped in on that conversation, and the whole thing sort of spiraled.”
Though the CityHeART band idea hasn’t exactly panned out in any sort of formal way, the group landed on a weekly music meeting, open to anyone who wants to come and play music or just listen to music. The idea was just to start something small and let it grow slowly.
Within a month, the weekly music meeting at The Hub (held on Tuesday mornings at 10am) gave way to the idea of a larger gathering with food and socialization as well as finger painting and doodling in the backyard at The Hub.
Within that same timeline, Pelonis was contacted by Curtin Maritime, a local marine solutions company that provides a wide range of maritime services. The company was looking for opportunities to support community projects and give back, and the timing of this connection could not have been better!
Approximately 65 guests enjoyed music, poetry, coloring, and painting at the first Art from Ashes Art Night on Memorial Day Weekend, and Curtin Maritime sponsored this community event with a full taco bar for all guests to enjoy.
“We’re so grateful to Curtin Maritime for jumping in with tacos to sponsor this event,” CityHeART Art Director Izzy Matos said. “There’s nothing like sharing a meal to bring people together, and the combination of delicious food and art is such a great way to build community.”
CityHeART Veterans Council President, Mike Netherly aka RocBox, hit the mic with Dabiri and Matos for a crowd pleasing jam session, and then the teens jumped in with vocals and freestyle rap to close out the night.