Patchwork Central’s summer Arts & Smarts Children’s Programming has been active and animated throughout the month of June.
Art Garden Week I was followed by two Bike Weeks for teens. First, participants practiced their bike repair basics in Patchwork’s studio under the supervision of Pete and Paul, our regular Bike Shop volunteers, and Charles from the Evansville Vanderburgh Public Library. After the first day, one participant said her biggest lesson was that bike repair is difficult and that she should just pay someone to repair her bike for her. We encouraged her to stick with it and worked to make sure everyone found success.
After a week of practicing on their own bikes, our Bike Week participants were ready to do a service project by visiting several area parks and offering our bike repair services to any passerby. Each day, a group of us rode our bikes from Patchwork to that day’s location. Once there, we organized bike obstacle courses, bike helmet safety demonstrations, and additional bike rides to celebrate all things bike while we waited for customers. Our participants all had a great time. In recognition of their service, they will receive special rewards during our Garden Feast on July 11.
Dance Week followed Bike Weeks with a different kind of action and excitement. Sadia, from the Children’s Center for Dance Education, came to lead the group in a series of fun experiences in dance. There were morning stretches, grand jumps across the circle of sun cast on the floor by Patchwork’s big circle window, swirls of streamers, Hawaiian poi balls, Spanish fans, and a Soul Train dance line. And, there was laughter and acceptance of everyone who joined in to exercise and to happily move their bodies.
We have one more week of our Summer Arts & Smarts activities: Art Garden Week II, which will take place on July 8-11. Additionally, we’ll have our annual Garden Feast from 5:30 pm-7:30 pm on Thursday, July 11. Anyone who has participated in Arts & Smarts activities this summer is welcome to attend. It’s a potluck meal, so bring some food to share!
Also, we are very grateful for our partnerships with the Patchwork Bike Shop volunteers, Evansville Vanderburgh Public Library, and the Children’s Center for Dance Education. These partnerships are essential in making Bike Weeks and Dance Week happen!