New Trolley Route for November Artwalk

In addition to the regularly routed trolley for the November Artwalk, another trolley route will be added.  The second trolley route will be labeled as the University Route Trolley (or something to that effect) and will run an extended route up to the University of Akron to pick up students who will be attending the Artwalk.  Kelli Fetter will be on the University trolley serving as a tour guide for most of the evening.

Students will have to board the University trolley if they wish to get back to campus.  If you hear any complaints from the regular Artwalk patrons about the extended route, please let them know that the other trolley is running the regular route.

If you would like to contribute toward the December Artwalk advertising on 91.3 The Summit, please complete the attached form or follow this link.  December is a great time to promote Holiday shopping and the extra advertising could really help boost Artwalk attendance.

“Pop Up: Art in Unexpected Places”

Contemporary dance in a cemetery. An eye-catching mural on a wall along a well-traveled street.  Indie bands rocking out on porches in an urban neighborhood.  Dracula on pointe shoes in a vacant storefront.

During “Pop Up: Art in Unexpected Places,” a free workshop from 5 to 6:30 p.m. on Wednesday, Nov. 12, local artists and organizers will talk about the magic and the nitty-gritty of presenting visual and performing arts in unusual venues.  How do these events need to be publicized differently? How do you navigate city regulations and liability issues? What fabulous, unused venues are waiting in plain sight?

Presented by the Akron Area Arts Alliance (AAAA) and underwritten by the Margaret Clark Morgan Foundation, “Pop Up” will be at AAAA’s Summit Artspace, 140 E. Market St., Akron.  Open to AAAA members and the public, the free workshop will also include refreshments.

Moderated by AAAA Vice President Elaine Guregian, former arts writer for the Akron Beacon Journal, the “Pop Up” presenters include visionary Akron developer Tony Troppe, Heinz Poll Summer Dance Festival director Jane Startzman, Neos Dance Theatre co-artistic director Bobby Wesner, Highland Square Porch Rokr organizer Anita Marron, and Univeristy of Akron art education professor Elisa Gargarella.

Also during the workshop, audience members will be encouraged to share ideas and ask the panelists questions.  The workshop’s timing is ideal the John S. and James L. Knight Foundation is currently soliciting funding proposals for programs that engage and enrich Akron – including arts projects in unexpected places.

Registration is encouraged.  Contact the Akron Area Arts Alliance at 330-375-8480 or

A New Arts Initiative for

Republished from a September 20, 2014 article written by Dennis Scholl

Last year, Knight and the GAR Foundation released a survey on the arts in Akron that was telling.

We found a real hunger for arts and culture in the city. People craved it. But we also found some gaps: African-Americans and young people in particular were having trouble finding programming that spoke to them.

I was impressed by how the arts community turned the information into an opportunity. They met, began to talk about what culture meant to them and the broader community, to look at strengths, opportunities and a way forward.

To us at Knight, it was a great sign that Akron as a community was sitting down to reshape its cultural identity.

Knight Foundation wants to play its part in helping Akron shape its new vibrant cultural community.  So today we’re excited to announce $6 million in new investments in the arts in Akron, funding we hope will build on this momentum. To start, $3 million will go to five of the city’s anchor arts  institutions – groups that have excelled at artistic excellence and  in finding new ways to go deep into the community to create cultural opportunities for everyone. They include:

  • The Akron Civic Theater, which has excelled at making the theater available to the community with the help of our buy down program, where we subsidize fees so that smaller groups have a place to present their work at the beautiful Civic Theater. Knowing the Civic is available to them frees these organizations to focus on developing artistically excellent work.
  • Tuesday Musical Association, which brings the greatest performers in the world to Akron – and with our Stay a Day fund convinces them to stay an extra day to teach a master class and spend time with students. We’re helping them extend the time those artists spend in the city so they can meet with more local youth.
  • YEPAW, which has spent 25 years working with Akron kids, many of whom have gone on to excel at careers in the arts. Our funding will help them expand their summer program to 300 high school students, who will learn everything from piano to video production. I was touched to hear that one of the summer program graduates, Te’Anna Hunt, is organizing her first concert as a fundraiser for YEPAW. She is just 16 – but she credits YEPAW for not only helping her develop her music but also her leadership skills.
  • Akron Symphony, an extraordinary partner in our Random Acts of Culture program, where they literally did hundreds of performances that brought performers out of the Symphony Hall and into the street.  Knight funding is going to help them seek even greater community participation in their work.
  • And the Akron Art Museum – an ongoing investment of $1 million we announced last year to help present groundbreaking exhibitions, like that of contemporary artist Trenton Doyle Hancock that is open right now. The museum is now a nationally recognized expert in community engagement and in reshaping the way communities think about and interact with museums. You can read about these efforts in a new post by the museum’s Executive Director Mark Masuoka.

We’re also excited to bring the Knight Arts Challenge to Akron in 2015. It’s our fifth city for the challenge, a community-wide contest for the best arts ideas. It’s open to everyone – and we mean everyone – whether you’re a nonprofit, individual or a business with a great idea. We’ll be giving away up to $1 million a year over three years, and there will be lots of winners. We’ll  announcing more information as we get closer to the contest launch date next summer, but you can get a jump start by reading more about the challenge on our site and looking through past winners. Start thinking about your best idea for the arts in Akron. We can’t wait to see what you send us.

— Dennis Scholl, VP/arts at Knight Foundation