All ages and cultures need opportunities for creative interaction enjoying the arts together, learning with and from each other. It seems that so many activities have age restrictions. We need more family-friendly, all-ages events. 

Adults need activities as well as children. Not everyone is a parent with a child in their life. Adults can mentor youth. Not everyone enjoys art events that are alcohol-centered. One of the greatest phrases a person can hear is “all are welcome.” How else can we truly enjoy one another and learn to work together?

I reflect on my own experience learning about art and culture when I was growing up. I developed my passion for the arts, crafts and multicultural folk art by seeing the art my family, neighbors and friends were creating and by learning about the arts in school, church and Camp Fire Girls.

At 18, I joined the El Sobrante Art Guild (a group like the Stockton Art League) that met at the El Sobrante Library. At the time I was the youngest member. In more than 10 years of involvement with the guild I learned to appreciate age-old traditions like crochet and tatting and the artisans that make them. Through my association with the guild I developed my artistic talents learning from the group’s elders. Youth can reinvigorate us with their energy and enthusiasm and elders can bring wisdom from a life full of experience. All have something to contribute.

This week I attended a kite-making activity at the Chavez Library because I have always been fascinated with the artistry of kites. When I arrived, I was told that the activity was for teens and tweens but I could stay.

Last week there was an origami activity for teens at the Chavez Library I had wanted to attend. I learned that the library assistant who was teaching children how to make kites also taught the origami class. I asked her if I could have the pattern for the origami she taught. She showed me the origami flower that the children made and gave me step-by-step demo patterns. The flower was the one I had always wanted to learn.

Origami is also a fascination of mine especially since moving to Stockton and seeing intricate origami creations year after year at the annual Obon Festival held at the Buddhist Church of Stockton. Save the date for this year’s festival Aug. 4-5.

Today, the Pacific Junior Music Camp presents a free final concert by middle school students, fifth to eighth grades, performing in concert band and orchestra. Come support the students, many whom are aspiring to become professional musicians. The concert takes place at the Faye Spanos Concert Hall at 1:30 p.m.

On Sunday, visit the Filipino American National Historical Museum (337 E. Weber Ave.) at 1:30 p.m. for an Afternoon at the Museum with Anita Bautista talking about the Filipina-American Experience.

On Tuesday, the Voces: Alma, Vida y Corazon poetry series continues at the Mexican Heritage Center, 111 S. Sutter at 6 p.m. Bring your poems to share at the open mic.

July 21

Start next Saturday with the Multicultural Festival at the Dorothy Jones Center, 2044 Fair St. and Merlo Gym lawn, from 11 a.m.–7 p.m. The event includes a fashion show, foods from around the world, live entertainment, face-painting and more and is free to the public

Spend the evening at the Bedford Block Party and Summer Wonderland fundraiser for KXVS, the Voice of Stockton, from 6-10 p.m. There will be food vendors and artists in the Tap Plastics parking lot and art activities and live music at the Art Lab, 2001 Pacific Ave.

Save the date for the Hatch Workshop — Meet the Space event on July 28 from 6-9 p.m. Hatch Workshop, located at 33 N. Aurora St., will be offering workshops in fine craft, design and more. Come preview the space, meet the makers and enjoy live music, art and demos.

 

Joy Neas is an arts advocate and coordinator for ArtSplash. Contact her at dibsonart@yahoo.com.