Community Folk Art Center Hosts Afro-Dominican Dance Troupe
Move to the beat of Afro-Dominican dance at the Community Folk Art Center (CFAC), 805 E. Genesee St., Syracuse, beginning at 6:30 p.m. Saturday, May 4. The program will feature Areytos Performance Works, a Bronx-based dance theater company. The event is free and open to the public.
The program will include a performance, artist talk-back and a participatory introduction to Afro-Dominican dance with Areytos Performance Works co-founder and artistic director Sita Frederick; master traditional dancer-artisan Genaro Ozuna; dancer Alethea Pace; and poetry by award-winning author, Nelly Rosario. Areytos was originally scheduled to perform in February as part of CFAC’s Caribbean Cinematic Festival, but Hurricane Sandy prevented the group from traveling to Syracuse.
Founded in 2003, Areytos Performance Works creates innovative contemporary dance-theatre rooted in Caribbean traditions and principles of social justice. The troupe’s original, multifaceted productions are informed by untold histories and current community events.
Areytos Performance Works began in the Manhattan neighborhoods of Harlem and Washington Heights as a multi-disciplinary arts organization dedicated to creating community-based projects that privilege Africanist aesthetics, historical research and artistic risk-taking in the Caribbean community. The troupe works at the crossroads of performance art, African-Caribbean dances, contemporary modern dance, collaboration and stage environments.
CFAC is a unit of the Department of African American Studies in Syracuse University’s College of Arts and Sciences, and a member of the Coalition of Museum and Art Centers. The Areytos Performance Works event is co-sponsored by the Central New York Community Foundation, CNY Latino, YMCA Downtown Writer’s Center, the Spanish Action League of Onondaga County, the Gifford Foundation and various Syracuse University departments and organizations, including the Office of Multicultural Affairs, the Caribbean Students Association, Arts Engage, La Casita Cultural Center, Student African American Society, University College, the Department of Sociology, LGBT Resource Center and the Writing Program.
Most Wanted: Find a Funky Nest!
Whether you find a robin’s nest on a statue or a hummingbird’s nest on wind chimes, your picture of a bird nest in a funky place can win big in the Cornell Lab of Ornithology’s Funky Nests in Funky Places contest. With nesting season underway, this contest challenges everyone to get outside and watch nature in even the most unexpected places.
“Just start looking,” says Karen Purcell, who created the contest several years ago as part of the Cornell Lab’s Celebrate Urban Birds citizen-science project. “Past experience has shown us you can find bird nests in the most surprising places. We’ve seen them in helmets, old boots, stoplights, store signs, car tires, clotheslines, mailboxes, potted plants and even a stuffed moose head!”
The Funky Nests contest begins May 1 and lasts until June 15. Entries may be photos, videos, artwork, poems or stories. You don’t have to be a bird expert or an expert photographer. People of all ages are welcome to participate as individuals or with a class, community center, or afterschool program. Prizes include binoculars, bird feeders, cameras, an iPad and more.
Entry deadline is June 15.
Find more information about how to find nests, approach nests without disturbing the birds and enter the contest at funkynests.org.
Extreme Mustang Makeover – Henrietta Style
Jessica Calmes, owner and operator of N-C Ranch in Henrietta, has recently been named as one of only 35 trainers selected nation-wide for the Extreme Mustang Makeover New Jersey Edition.
Jessica, along with the other trainers, will have approximately 120 days to gentle a wild horse to compete for an estimated purse of $20,000 in prize money, and showcase the mustang’s natural abilities for a percentage of its sale price at auction.
Jessica was born and raised in Rochester, and most recently lived in Phelps for 13 years. She has ridden horses her entire life. She is an accomplished trainer and competes in the woman’s rodeo sport of barrel racing throughout the country. She is a past state champion, and was named one of the top 10 riders in the country. She is a member of the National Barrel Horse Association, The American Quarter Horse Association and the International Barrel Racing Association.
Karma, Jessica’s randomly assigned horse, and the other mustangs competing in the Extreme Mustang Makeover challenge are mares that were virtually untouched prior to pick-up by the selected trainers earlier this month. Karma is a 5-year-old gathered from the Elm Creek Wild Horse and Burro Center in Nebraska this past winter.
You can follow Jessica and Karma’s progress at her Facebook page: facebook.com/nbarcranch. There are daily updates, pictures and videos on this site.
The horses will be judged at the Extreme Mustang Makeover at the Gloucester Dream Park in Gloucester, New Jersey, August 2 to 4, 2013. They will be judged on their body condition and new skills. The trainers and mustangs will compete in a series of classes that will showcase their new skills.
Ganondagan’s Opening Weekend Shines on Recreation, Culture and Cuisine
Opening weekend for the 2013 season at Ganondagan State Historic Site on Saturday, May 4, and Sunday, May 5, is packed with cultural, recreational and culinary opportunities for visitors – a harbinger of this year’s rich programming presented by the Friends of Ganondagan.
Saturday morning, May 4, begins with volunteers through New York State’s “I Love My Park Day” sprucing up the grounds around the Visitors Center and Bark Longhouse. At 2:00 p.m., a wooden stick lacrosse demonstration is followed by an informal game. Participation is open, and all are welcome to bring their own sticks, although wooden sticks will be available for use.
Sunday morning, May 5, begins with a corn mush-making demonstration from 10:30 a.m. to noon at the longhouse. Visitors will have a hands-on experience, and learn the steps needed to make this traditional food (similar to oatmeal). At 1:30 p.m., the focus turns to archery with “The Bent Stick,” a practical guide to Northeast Woodlands archery. The history of this iconic weaponry will be shared, and hands-on demonstrations will be offered. Opening weekend hours are 10 a.m. to 5 p.m., with longhouse tours from 10 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. Site admission is $3 for adults, $2 for students and seniors.
In May and June, corn continues to be front and center thanks to Ganondagan’s Iroquois White Corn Project with two new “Corn & Community” events centering on creation, cosmology and cooking (dates TBA). On Thursday, June 27, Ganondagan hosts the Rochester premiere of Bury My Heart with Tonawanda at the Memorial Art Gallery. The film tells the fictional story of John Harrison, a developmentally disabled boy rejected by his own family, but accepted and nurtured by the Tonawanda Seneca Nation. Written, edited and produced by Adrian Esposito, himself on the autism spectrum, Bury My Heart with Tonawanda is directed by Gary Sundown from the Tonawanda Indian Reservation.
Ganondagan’s annual events continue with the popular seven-mile Old Goat Run; the 22nd Native American Dance & Music Festival with “Lord of the Strings” violinist Arvel Bird and Genie- and NAMMY-winning singer songwriter Jennifer Kreisberg as the scheduled headliners; the Native American Lecture Series in the fall, “Adoption & Adaptation” – a collaboration with the Center for Service-Learning and the Department of Religious Studies at Nazareth College; the Living History event – a reenactment of French explorer Robert LaSalle’s 1669 visit to the Seneca; the historic Canandaigua Treaty Day; and the Native American Winter Games & Sports.
Visit ganondagan.org/events.html, or call 585-742-1690 for information about upcoming events. Ganondagan State Historic Site is located at 1488 State Route 444 in Victor. Most, but not all, activities take place at the site. Programming and events are a combination of fee-based and free, with some preregistration required.
Geneva Rotary Seeks Applications for Grants
The Geneva Rotary Club is seeking applications for grants from local organizations and agencies. Club President James DeVaney explained that the rotary annually awards grants for deserving projects in the community. DeVaney said Rotarians raise money for grants through various community projects including the Santa Train, the Rotary Service Above Self Dinner/Auction and other fundraising efforts.
In 2012, the rotary club supported the following organizations: The African American Men’s Association, Faith Community Church, Geneva Concerts, Geneva Community Projects, Geneva Public Library, Geneva Reads, Geneva Theatre Guild, Lakefront Childcare Center, Literacy Volunteers, Smith Opera House and St. Peter’s Arts Academy.
Application forms are available on the Geneva Rotary website, genevarotaryclub.org. The deadline for applications is May 15. Late applications will not be considered. Decisions will be announced on or after June 15.
Questions about grant applications can be addressed to 315-789-7716 or to secretary@GenevaRotaryClub.org.
First Friday Returns Village-Wide in May
With the arrival of spring, Skaneateles’ First Friday art walk continues its “May to December Romance” of the arts.
First Friday, now in its seventh year, returns May 3 from 6 to 9 p.m. with art openings, wine tastings and entertainment throughout the village.
Participating shops will fly First Friday flags outside their establishments, and First Friday passports and maps will be available at all venues. Visitors who get their passports stamped at any three locations can redeem them that evening for one of the following: a free appetizer with purchase of an entrée at Joe’s Pasta Garage; a free glass of house wine or beer at the Sherwood Inn; or a free appetizer at AC’s Lakeside Restaurant on Otisco Lake (Rte. 174, Marietta). Other specials will be offered throughout the season.
“We invite everyone to join us and explore all that the village has to offer,” says Susan Dove, executive director of the Skaneateles Area Chamber of Commerce. “We have an exciting season planned – in June, we’ll be featuring Skaneateles student artwork at many locations.”
Local artists who would like to participate in upcoming First Fridays should contact the Skaneateles Area Chamber of Commerce at 315-685-0552. For more information on First Friday, go to skaneateles.com or facebook.com/SkaneatelesFirstFriday.
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