It was a "Grand Night for the Arts" last Saturday as 100 supporters of the arts gathered at the Golden Chain Theatre to raise funds for scholarships for high school seniors who plan on continuing their education in the arts.
The evening featured a variety of performances by past and present scholarship recipients, showcasing their talents in music, graphic art, dance, cinematography, journalism, and drama.
The 2014 scholarship applicants include:
Yosemite High School: Eirena Ewert, Pedro Villa, Ben Hartesveldt, Jeff Foster, Hunter Murphy, Eddie Nixon, Kenny Jeffris, and Brenna Hatfield.
Minarets High School: Catherine Broyles, Alana Halevas, Megan Hillyard, and Jesse Parr.
Glacier High School: Elseana Skowronski.
Jackie Byers, president of the Vision Academy of the Arts, said the evening is made possible because of all the generous people in our community who believe in the arts and education.
"The proceeds from tonight will enable Vision Academy of the Arts to reward talented students in our Mountain Area schools." Byers said.
Food for the evening was provided by Supernaw's BAR-B-Q, Nancy's Indian Tacos, and deserts including home-made cakes and chocolate by Grayson and Sherry Brasher, owners of O.M.F.G. (Oh My Fantastic Goodies).
George Sitts of Oakhurst said it is easy for people to forget the arts but he is always overwhelmed by the talent at Grand Night for the Arts.
"Our community life gets so busy wrapped up in day-to-day business it is easy to neglect the arts and especially the support of our artistically talented youth," Sitts said. "Kudus should go to the adult artists of Vision Academy, volunteering to put on events like this and working all year developing that youthful talent. Each year I am overwhelmed at the talent on display here. Our adult artists nurturing novice artists for the sake of art ... a fine example of the generosity and cultural richness of our community."
Monika Moulin, member of the Yosemite Unified School District board of trustees, served as master of ceremonies for the event.
Applicants will have an interview and an audition prior to the naming of scholarship recipients.
The scholarships will be announced at the Yosemite, Minarets, and Glacier's awards nights.
Last year, $6,000 in scholarships were presented to graduating seniors. Vision Academy of the Arts is still accepting tax deductible donations for its 2014 scholarship fund.
The next Vision Academy scholarship fundraiser will be a corned-beef dinner, 2-4 p.m., Sunday, March 16, at Whittenberg Hall at New Community United Methodist Church on Crane Valley Road (426). Details: Jackie Byers, (559) 683-7071, Sheila Adams, (559) 760-3632.