I cannot remember a life before being involved in the arts. From playing Benjamin in “Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat” at age 5 to performing regularly with Flutistry today, this is pretty much the only life that I know.
In 2006, our family moved to Winona not knowing what this new town would have to offer us. We soon found out that the arts are a central part of this community. Our kids had incredible opportunities in the areas of dance and music. Winona helped put our daughter on stage as the Snow Queen in “The Nutcracker” and gave our son the training he needed to play Principal French Horn in the Minnesota All-State Orchestra.
Winona has given me many opportunities, too. From two seasons as Graphic/Web Designer for the Great River Shakespeare Festival to helping put together the Winona Municipal Band Centennial Celebration to running the Maria W. Faust Sonnet Contest, I have found a lot of ways to give back to the arts community that has been so welcoming to our family. I have had the privilege to work with many organizations and individuals, sometimes through web and graphic design, fundraising support, event coordination, or just plain being an extra set of hands where needed. In addition to GRSF, the Municipal Band, and the Sonnet Contest, I have worked with the Frozen River Film Festival, Winona County Historical Society, Winona Symphony Orchestra, Theatre du Mississippi, Minnesota Conservatory for the Arts, Rockwell Kent Centennial Celebration, “Attempting the Northwest Passage” documentary, Winona Senior High School Band Boosters, and individual artists Julie Johnston, Ken McCullough, and Kathy Peterson.
My work with the River Arts Alliance since 2015 has ranged from revamping the website to producing the Weekly Update to helping organize projects like the Winona Art Walk. I have loved meeting other members and finding ways to get even more involved in this dynamic, thriving arts community that we call Winona!