I would be telling a fib if I didn’t say these past months have been a challenge at the Hoffman. We’ve had a steep learning curve to figure out how to offer meaningful and safe points of engagement. As per usual, our volunteers will not be daunted! I’d like to thank them and let you know what they have done for all of us.
The Virtual World
How many people over the age of (ahem, never mind) does it take to learn Zoom, Thinkific, YouTube, iMovie, G-Suite, and so much more? A relatively small group of intrepid individuals have helped our community connect through over three dozen virtual events and workshops. They make it look easy, but I can assure you our productions take hours and hours of research, preparatory work, learning, practice (so much practice), editing (don’t even mention this to people or they want to throttle you). There has been a fair amount of hair-tearing and endless waits on helplines to solve confounding problems. There is no script to follow. We are learning completely new things at the same time everyone else in the world is doing the same.
For their courageous foray into a new world and bringing all of us along with them, I thank Toni Greening, Terri Desaro, Vera Wildauer, Dave Holt, and Ketzel Levine. But especially, a loud shout-out to Sharon Gibson whose technical and research skills have given us a big jump forward. If you’ve not yet enjoyed one of our captivating, virtual offerings, do! While virtual isn’t as satisfying as seeing one other in person, it gives us a sense of community and connection.
Out in the Garden
Meanwhile, a small army of weeders, waterers, and pruners kept the Wonder Garden looking spectacular this summer and provided a respite for our community to enjoy a safe-distanced conversation, a few moments of quiet, and artful and inspiring plantings. In addition to the new, proud tool shed (designed by Lloyd Lindley and constructed by Lloyd, Philip Hammond, Jim Phillips, Ketzel Levine, and Heda Koh and finished off with an original Mar Gorman painted tool), garden volunteers put on a spectacular fall plant sale. And, ta da! They raised $3,162 for buying—just wait: CHICKEN MANURE! A very special thank you to Mark and Linda Kuestner, Heda Koh, Susan Reinhart, Jan Layne, Gretta Siegel and, of course, Garden Curator, Ketzel Levine. Coming next year? Another replacement for the shadecloth that was shredded in those bizarre winds. Alas, it is always something!
Finally—to every one of you reading this ode to volunteers—we need people who will volunteer to serve as behind-the-scenes online hosts for workshops and events using Zoom meetings or webinars. Until now we have relied on just three hard-working volunteers (and, guess what? They are getting tired). If you have the technical skills or aptitude to step up for this essential support, please email [email protected] You can make a significant impact by helping our community explore, create, and connect through arts and culture– thank you for considering this request.
With warm regards,
Hoffman Center for the Arts