Even if you’ve never taken a Community Recreation class or played in a Community Rec sport like Pickle Ball, if you see the MountainFilm on Tour festival today and Saturday, director Mike Illg will count you as a recreation program user.
“I always like to look at it as one of our biggest community recreation offerings,” Illg said. “I consider everyone who buys a ticket as a participant in a Community Recreation class. Hopefully, they come away with something.”
To help artists prepare and apply for the Rasmuson Foundation’s annual grant awards, Bunnell Street Arts Center’s Cosmic Agents Initiative presents a series of workshops to help enhance grant writing skills for young and emerging artists. The first workshop is 5 p.m. Jan. 19 at Bunnell and will focus on strengthening the artist statement. Workshop participants should bring drafts of their artist statement. The class will look at strong sample artist statements and discuss editing. Fat Olives pizza will be provided. All are welcome at no charge.
Mountain Film on Tour returns to Homer for two nights of short documentary films. Shows are 7 p.m. Jan.23 and Jan. 25 at the Mariner Theatre. Different films are shown each night. Admission is $10 each show and benefits Homer Community Recreation. Mountain Film features films on wilderness and exotic adventures as well as environmental awareness. For a full schedule, visit communityrecreation.org.
The Homer Council on the Arts last week announced the recipients of its Annual Arts Awards. The awards will be presented at its annual meeting starting at 7 p.m. Friday at its offices on Pioneer Avenue. This year’s winners are:
• Arts Leadership/Advocacy, Peter Swanson
• Youth Artist of the Year, Patrick Latimer
• Artist of the Year, Tom Kizzia
• Arts Lifetime Achievement, Toby Tyler
Homer artist Ronald Senungetuk will receive the Governor’s Award for Lifetime Achievement in the Arts and Humanities at an awards ceremony Jan. 30 at the Juneau Arts and Culture Center. Also to receive the Governor’s Award for the Humanities is Homer poet Eva Saulitis.
Across the nation, mentoring is in the spotlight this month. The importance of mentors, need for more and how to be involved is what National Mentoring Month is all about. Local activities include:
The annual Homer Council on the Arts variety shows have mixed it up over the years. From simple talent shows they became “Out of the Woodwork,” the incarnation the last two years, where performers who might not have been on the stage were challenged to show their talent.
This year, musician and director Sally Oberstein had a different vision: step out. That’s step out as in, get out of your comfort zone, get together with people you might not know and do things you might not have done before. For Oberstein, that also meant, step out of the project, too.
The Bunnell Street Arts Center Alex Combs Award Committee has awarded Ketchikan sculptor Carmel Anderson $1,500 to support workshop fees and materials to study with artist Matthew West. The Alex Combs Award, funded by private donations and sales of the late Halibut Cove artist’s work, supports Alaska artists to participate in workshops and mentorships.
Former Homer News managing editor and reporter Chris Bernard, now living in Portland, Ore., has been nominated for the 2014 Oregon Book Award for his nonfiction book, “Chasing Alaska.” Published by Lyons Press, “Chasing Alaska” looks at Bernard’s Alaska experience in the context of a distant relative, Joe Bernard, who explored and settled in Alaska 100 years before Chris Bernard’s arrival in the state. Other nominees in the nonfiction category are William J. Bernstein for “Masters of the Word,” Paul Collins for “Duel with the Devil,” R.
In conjunction with the art exhibit, “Liberty and Justice (For All),” the Friends of the Homer Public Library holds several upcoming events. At 6 p.m. on Tuesday in the Fireplace Reading Lounge at the Library is an open discussion, “Human Rights, Individual Responsibilities.” Join panelists as they consider issues such as the right to a democratic government balanced by our duties as citizens or the rights of free speech balanced by the hope of reasoned discourse and personal integrity.
The Hungry Hat Circus of Anchorage visits Homer on Saturday at Bishop’s Beach Park for an afternoon of free circus-art skill sharing, an evening “pass the hat” performance and an open Fire Jam. Workshops run from noon to 3 p.m. and include hooping, juggling and poi, or fire spinning. The circus performance is 6 to 7:30 p.m. followed by an open fire jam of poi skills from 8 to 9:30 p.m. The evening ends at 11 p.m. with a bonfire and Christmas tree burn.
Whether it’s looking at the Exxon Valdez Oil Spill, the impact of climate change or living with the tides, Homer artists have long used a variety of media to explore social and environmental issues. It’s no surprise then that when the Homer Prevention Project developed strategies to address underage drinking, art again came up as a tool.
The application period has opened for the Rasmuson Foundation’s annual Individual Artist Awards. Applications will be accepted as of Jan. 1. Grant awards go directly to artists to support the development of new work or for activities that advance creative development. Individual Artist Awards provide support Alaska artists in ten artistic disciplines at all stages of their careers and creative development.
This year, fellowships will only be awarded in media arts, multidiscipline/new genre, music composition, presentation/interpretation and visual arts.
In honor of the 100th birthday of poet William Stafford, Homer poets and writers hold a William Stafford Centennial Celebration at 6 p.m. Jan. 18 at K-Bay Caffe on Pioneer Avenue. Literary artists will read Stafford’s work. Born Jan. 18, 1914, Stafford died in 1993, but two decades after his death continues to have a profound influence on the American life of letters, said Homer poet Erin Hollowell, organizer of the event.
The Hungry Hat Circus of Anchorage visits Homer on Jan. 11 at Bishop’s Beach Park for an afternoon of free circus-art skill sharing, an evening “past the hat” performance and an open Fire Jam. Workshops run from noon to 3 p.m. and include hooping, juggling and poi, or fire spinning. The circus performance is 6 to 7:30 p.m. followed by an open fire jam of poi skills from 8 to 9:30 p.m. The evening ends at 11 p.m. with a bonfire and Christmas tree burn.
With some galleries closing for January as they do annual cleaning and reorganizing, it’s a good time for new artists to shine this month. Fortunately, young photographers have chosen this First Friday to show off what they learned in the 12-week PhotoVoice classes taught in Rand Paul’s Homer Middle School and Alayne Tetor’s Homer High School classes. Tara Schmidt and Rachel Romberg of the South Peninsula Haven House team have joined with local artists to teach youth photographic techniques that also can be used to address social issues.
Homer-raised and now Seattle-based singer-songwriter Andrew Vait performs with a gallery concert at 7 p.m. Jan. 11 at the Homer Council on the Arts. With his group Eternal Fair, Vait has been building a career in the Seattle club and independent music scene.
The Homer Council on the Arts offers theater and art classes for youth starting in January. Starting Jan. 7 is its Youth-Teen Musical Theatre for ages 8 to 18. Explore the theater form of melodrama and learn how to be a playwright, a lyricist, a choreographer, a bad guy/girl, a good girl/guy, a brilliant person, a fool, a musician and lots more. Classes meet 5:30-7 p.m. Tuesdays and Thursdays. The fee is $150 or $130 for HCOA members.
Brave New Alaskan Voices returns to Homer for a poetry slam at 6:30 p.m. Saturday at K-Bay Caffe. In November, Bunnell Street Arts Center brought BNAV to Homer for youth workshops and performances. BNAV aims to spark a team of competitive spoken word poets from Homer for national competition.
With Christmas and New Year’s Day both happening on Wednesday and in the middle of the week, holiday plans might be a bit off-kilter. It will be hard for working-stiffs to take a long weekend off, but that won’t stop Homer from celebrating the end of 2013.