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Sonoma County Gazette
Springs Splash by Thomas Martin

All About Art Escapes

Jun 25, 2018
by Thomas Martin


Art Escapes Provides A New World of Creativity And Learning For Young People Across The Communities!

“Art Escapes,” founded by Springs residents Thena Trygstad and Kate Ortolano provides art education and creative experiences to young people throughout the Sonoma Valley. Art Escapes is located at 17474 Highway 12. Children of varying ages are taught how to sketch, paint, and create in various media.

Sonoma Valley Artists Volunteer Time And Knowledge

Art Escapes has five regular volunteer artists who work with the children. In addition, another eight to ten local artists provide periodic assistance. Art Escapes has two part-time employees. 

How may students join Art Escapes? 

Students walk-in from nearby schools (Flowery and El Verano). Others call in or contact Art Escapes on line (707-938-5551 or Art Escapes visits Sonoma Valley Schools in the art van. For example, the van visited El Verano School on Cinco de Mayo. It also participated in the City Party in the Plaza as well as the farmer’s market events in Larson Park. Have an artistic need? Will travel.

(Insert Van Photo)

An interesting student activity is introducing them to plein air sketching and painting. As the name indicates students are taken outdoors and asked to sketch or paint what they see. This is often on the sidewalk on Highway 12.

Interaction with Sonoma Unified

Art Escapes travels to schools upon request. They have conducted over one hundred after school classes., especially on Wednesdays when schools have “short days.” The El Verano School orchestra performed one time when Art Escapes conducted classes there.

Other activities….

“Art Sprout” is a special program for parents and pre-school children funded through a grant. The free program meets two hours in the morning where parents and children learn the basics of color and design. The program runs three weeks and concludes the fourth week with a trip to the Sonoma Valley Museum of Art.

Summer Camp runs in two week segments. There is a cost of $150 per week, but no one is turned away. Scholarships are available.

There is a free teen art program on Fridays in the lounge. There are always two to three projects taking place in addition to social interaction among boys, girls, and pizza. 

Shows in the art gallery display the work of local artists and students alike. Shows remain in place for a two month period. Visitors are encouraged to come to the gallery at 17474 Highway 12.

Generous Support

Generous Sonomans help fund Art Escapes. According to Ms. Trystad they have received fifteen grants. Impact 100 provided the funds to purchase the Art van. The Rose Marie Pieper Foundation supports funded classes where students work in glass.

The Springs and the Sonoma Valley as a whole are fortunate to have this creative organization here to serve the needs of children and adults alike.

Thanks to all who make this endeavor a grand success.

New Gourmet Sites Expand In The Springs

Handmade Hamburger Looks To Be Readying To Open!

After many months in the doldrums Hamburger West (Highway 12 and Hawthorne Avenue) next to the Beauty Salon across from Williams Auto is preparing to open. The signs of life at Hamburger West are the workers tearing out old fixtures preparing for reconstruction. When quizzed about an opening date Sebastian Hernandez of Kingdom Minded Electric said he didn’t know. The intense work being performed suggests the answer is likely late summer or early fall. Can’t wait for a handmade juicy burger…..

Barking Dog Roasters Adding A Bakery!

For weeks Peter Hodgson’s Barking Dog Roaster has been undergoing changes and remodeling. New Counters and backdrops have been added to enhance the enjoyment of Springs coffee aficionados. What are all those boxes? As of mid-June a pile of boxes and crates occupied the street side of the coffee community’s gathering room. Quizzing the wonderful workers revealed that those boxes contain parts for a new bakery. A new bakery! Looking forward to meeting the baker and learn more about this new development in the Springs world!

Springs Splash by Thomas Martin



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