Hill Student Philanthropy Council awards grants to local nonprofits

Here is some great news brought to us by The Hill School, where the Student Philanthropy Council has been learning how to be an effective philanthropist with Pottstown area nonprofits as the beneficiaries. For more info, click the link at the end of the next paragraph. As a resident and board member of PDIDA, I am personally grateful for the grant to PDIDA, which will help us implement some measures to improve safety and the downtown experience for visitors and residents.

Led by co-presidents Nabil Shaikh ’13 (Reading, Pa.) and Auguste Boova ’13 (Pottstown, Pa.), The Hill School’s Student Philanthropy Council (SPC) recently presented checks totaling $10,000 to four local nonprofit organizations to help fund those entities’ educational and community programs: Pottstown Downtown Improvement District Authority ($2,110); The Growing Center ($2,690); Montgomery Child Advocacy Project ($2,500); and the Pottstown Cluster of Religious Organizations ($2,700).  Read more about the recipients of the 2013 grants.

The SPC was established in 2009 through a gift to The Hill School courtesy of Charles A. Frank III, Hill ’59, and his wife, Betty. Hill student participants solicit and evaluate local nonprofit requests for funding, and then award a total of $10,000 in grants each year. Last year, through the Franks’ leadership and the generosity of  several other donors, The Student Philanthropy Council became an endowed program at the School with the establishment of The Student Philanthropy Council Endowment in honor of Kay and David Dougherty.

Call for Artists: “Art on the Hill -The Pottstown Art Show”

The 3rd annual open juried event, “Art on the Hill-The Pottstown Art Show” is being presented by the Pottstown Area Artists Guild in collaboration with the Hill School Center for the Arts from Friday, May 31 to Sunday, June 9, 2013. The opening reception on May 31st from 5 – 9 pm is free, open to the public, and includes music, food, beverages and a 7 pm awards ceremony where the show’s outstanding artists will be recognized with prizes of over $1,000.

Awards are Best of Show ($250), First Place ($200), Second Place ($150), Third Place ($100), 6 Honorable Mention Awards ($50), Hill School/ Curators Choice Awards ($100), and Arthur & David Nuzzo Award for photography ($250). Ellen O. Nelson, The Hill School Boyer Gallery Coordinator and Art Department Chair, will be this year’s Juror.

The show is open to all area artists, both members and non-members. Artists may submit up to 3 pieces of artwork but the 3rdpiece must be $250 or less. All artwork must be for sale. Artwork can be delivered to The Boyer Gallery on Tuesday, May 28, from 2-7 pm and Wednesday, May 29, from 9 am- 12 pm.

New this year: In “Scenes of The Hill,” PAAG will designate a small section of the art show to art painted en plein air at The Hill and art that depicts The Hill School. Artists are also invited to paint en plein air during the week of the art show on The Hill School campus. Call BarbaraTschantre for more information about plein air painting at 610-764-7586.

Please visit the Pottstown Area Artists Guild website, www.paag.info, to view their prospectus for more information on artwork size requirements, cost to submit artwork, and other information.

The art show will be open daily 11 am to 4 pm from Saturday, June 1 through Sunday, June 9 at the Boyer Gallery in the Hill School Center for the Arts at Beech and Sheridan Streets in Pottstown, PA.

Spring Concerts set at The Hill School

The Hill School will host its Spring Instrumental Concert on Friday, April 26 and the Spring Vocal Concert on Friday, May 3.

Both concerts, which are free and open to the public, will be held at 7:15 p.m. in the Center For The Arts at 860 Beech Street, Pottstown, PA 19464.

The Spring Instrumental Concert will feature performances by The Hill School Orchestra and Jazz Ensemble.

The Spring Vocal Concert will feature the Chorus, Chamber Choir, and Hilltones and Hilltrebles, the select all-male and all-female a cappella groups.

Hill School’s Erik Mortenson publishes award-winning poetry chapbook

Because April is “National Poetry Month,” Hill’s own  published, award-winning  poet Erik Mortenson is celebrating by sharing a poem a day with The Hill community, something he did last year and is continuing this year.

Courtesy of The Hill School
Courtesy of The Hill School

Erik recently published an award-winning chapbook, The Fifteenth Station (Accents Publishing.) All proceeds from the book will go toward supporting Rwandan women and children with HIV/AIDS.

The Hill’s website describes Erik’s poetry project and the inspiration for it in more detail here, but here are some snippets to whet your literary appetite:

“Mortenson has published a chapbook of poems that share the wrenching sadness, isolation, and physical suffering experienced by an impoverished young African woman with AIDS. The structure for the 15 poems, collectively titled The Fifteenth Station, mirrors the 14 Stations of the Cross that appear in Roman Catholic churches to commemorate the final hours of Jesus Christ.

“Mortenson – who writes as E.K. Mortenson – began conducting extensive research for this project in 2009, delving into religious imagery, medical reports from the World Health Service, and cultural background, all of which he synthesized into poems written in several different voices, primarily that of the woman with AIDS. Each poem (or “station”) advances and flows into the next….

“Late last summer, when The Fifteenth Station won the Judge’s Choice award in the Accents 2012 Poetry Chapbook Contest, Mortenson donated his modest prize money to Partners in Health and pledged to also donate every penny of his chapbook sales profits. To his delight, his publisher, Accents Publishing, has agreed to match his prize money and contribute 50 percent of its own profits from the chapbook sales to Partners in Health.

“‘In the small poetry press world — where presses operate on, at best, a shoestring budget — this is virtually unheard of,’ Mortenson says. ‘This is a most gracious gift.’

“Furthermore, Zachary Lehman, Headmaster of The Hill School, promised to match Mortenson’s prize money on behalf of the School. His offer ties in well with the theme established for students for The Hill’s 2012-13 school year, “What can I do?”

“‘Although the contributions themselves are small, I am hoping to create a groundswell of concern,” Mortenson says. “The book is $5. That’s like, what? A large cup of coffee at Starbuck’s? Now half of that money will go to women and children who need it most.'”

Congratulations to Erik for getting his work published and using his poetry to educate and inspire compassion for others!

Winter musical “Anything Goes” set for Feb. 15-17 at The Hill

This year’s winter musical at The Hill School is Anything Goes.

It will be held in the Center For The Arts (CFTA) Theater at 7:15 p.m. on Friday, February 15 and Saturday, February 16; a matinee showing will be held on Sunday, February 17 at 2 p.m.

With music and lyrics by Cole Porter, Anything Goes is an entertaining story about the “madcap antics aboard an ocean liner bound from New York to London.”

Admission for all three shows is free and open to the public.

For info and the cast list, visit there website here.

Deadline for Hill School Student Philanthropy Council is Thursday, Jan. 10

This comes to us from The Hill School… or you can go directly to their link here.

The Hill School has been accepting applications from Pottstown-area nonprofit organizations for its Student Philanthropy Council (SPC) grant program since early December. Interested organizations may download and submit a Request for Proposal. View and print a PDF of the Request for Proposal here. Completed applications must be submitted by Thursday, January 10, 2013.

The Student Philanthropy Council, first launched in October 2008, was created by Charles A. Frank, III, Hill School Class of ’59 and former Chairman of the Board of Trustees, and his wife, Betty. The Franks donated $35,000 to The Hill School to establish this program which allows Hill students to learn about the value and processes of philanthropy. In addition, the program provides funding to Pottstown nonprofit organizations with strategic initiatives focused on enhancing the health and overall wellness of area families and communities. Each year, students will award approximately three to five grants that will total $10,000.

Last year, representatives of the SPC presented a total of $10,000, divided into four grants, to local organizations and projects working toward an education-related goal. The 2012 recipients were Developmental Enterprises Corporation: $2,500; Pottstown YMCA: $2,000; Pottstown Area Police Athletic League: $2,500; and KenCrest Center’s Seeds of Purpose Program: $3,000. 

Historic House Tours set for this Sunday afternoon in Pottstown

I don’t know how my mom and I are going to get to all these houses on Sunday, but we’re going to do our darnedest to make it happen.

The Historic Pottstown Neighborhood Association presents its Historic Pottstown by Candlelight tour tomorrow, December 9th from 1-6 pm. This tour has been organized in a big way, once again, by Sue & Bill Krause, some of Pottstown’s long-standing, extraordinary volunteers.

Tickets/brochures can be purchased ahead of time TODAY for $12 at Carter’s Locksmith Shop, 127 N. Hanover St., or Pottstown Florist at 300 High St. Otherwise, it will cost you $13 on the day of the tour TOMORROW and then you can only purchase a ticket at Carter’s.

DETAILS: There is a trolley to take you around to most of these buildings. When you get your ticket, you can get the full scoop. Note that there is a Victorian Tea held by the Doe Club at the Elks Lodge #814 at 61 E. High Street from noon-2pm only. Refreshments and lavatories are at Zion’s United Church of Christ at 100 N. Hanover St. (built in 1796). There will be a Live Nativity on the lawn next to Emmanuel Lutheran from 2:30-4:30, weather permitting.

Twenty – 20! – buildings are on this year’s tour. I’ve scanned part of the brochure (see below) so you can check out the buildings and descriptions here. (See above. You MUST have a ticket/brochure to enter any of these buildings tomorrow afternoon!) There are plenty of newcomers… just a few… the Alumni Chapel and Memorial Hall at the Hill School; The Highland House, recently purchased by Wyndcroft School; the former Dr. Porter house at 344 E. High Street; a home on Queen Street in the East End with original woodwork and hardwood floors, representing the beauty of so much of Pottstown’s brick twin housing stock and many, many more. And if that’s not enough, don’t forget about Pottstgrove Manor, the historic home of the founder of our dear town, John Potts…

According to the estimable Evan Brandt in this Mercury article, “From 2 to 8 p.m., Pottsgrove Manor’s annual “Twelfth Night” tours, which continue until Jan. 6, will be transformed into a “Pottsgrove Manor by Candlelight” tour at the historic residence, 100 King St.

A donation of $2 is suggested for this event.

For this one-night-only event, costumed interpreters will portray colonial guests of John Potts, the ironmaster who founded Pottstown and built his mansion in 1752.

As visitors make their way through the house, they will hear the strains of music played on historical instruments, see English country dancing, catch a whiff of the delicious smells in the kitchen as historical cook, Deborah Peterson, prepares a colonial feast, play traditional tavern games, and enjoy the beauty of the mansion lit by candlelight and bedecked with greenery.

Next door to the mansion, in the Miller’s House, young visitors can make free colonial crafts to take home, and complimentary seasonal refreshments of hot spiced cider and cookies will be served.

Outside in the manor’s courtyard, visitors will be able to warm themselves by a bonfire (weather permitting) and enjoy historic carols sung by the Colonial Revelers singing group between 2 and 4 p.m.

Visitors are asked to park at the Carousel at Pottstown building, 30 West King Street; a shuttle will transport visitors to and from Pottsgrove Manor throughout the event. Handicapped parking is available in the museum’s parking lot.”


Pottstown Area Artists Guild to meet tomorrow, Sept. 18th – all invited.

Pottstown Area Artists Guild will hold its first meeting of the 2012-’13 year on Tuesday, September 18th at The Hill School Center For The Arts, Boyer Gallery at Beech and Sheridan Streets, Pottstown. The meeting is at 7:00 pm and is open to the public. The presenter this month will be local artist Bob Hakun.

Pottstown Area Artists Guild meets every third Tuesday of the month from September through June. Every month a guest artist from the surrounding area does a presentation or demonstration of their art. More information about the guild and a link to the Fall newsletter, got to www.paag.info.

Author of AMERICAN WASTELAND to speak at Hill School

Jonathan Bloom, author of American Wasteland, journalist, and blogger, will speak on the topic of food waste at The Hill School on Thursday evening, April 12th.

Bloom is the author of American Wasteland, a book on food waste. He is also  journalist and the blogger who created WastedFood.com. Bloom comes to The Hill as the third in a series of speakers who visited campus this year as part of The Hill’s academic theme for the year: Community. He will raise awareness about the issue of food waste.

Bloom’s address will take place in The Hill School’s Center For The Arts Theatre at 7:30 p.m. It is free of charge and open to the general public.

Bloom’s blog examines “why we waste food, why it matters and what we can do about it.” His work has appeared in The Washington Post, The Boston Globe, Variety, The Philadelphia Inquirer, TimeOut New York and Boston Magazine, among others. He lives in Durham, N.C.

Busy, busy holiday weekend in Pottstown

There are so many holiday activities taking place this weekend. I’ll highlight a few here. Please check out the calendar for the details, and take a look at The Mercury’s coverage of all the happenings.

Get out this morning for the Doe Club’s annual Cookie Walk and Soup Sale being held in the lobby of the Elks Lodge, 61 High Street, from 9:00 AM to 12 noon. 

Edgewood Cemetery is holding a wreath sale at 9:30 this morning at the cemetery (High & Keim Streets).

A Cash Mob is meeting at The Farmers’ Market at 10 am. Bring $20 to spend at the downtown business of your choice. BUY LOCAL!

On the entertainment side, there’s the Coventry Singers concert, TriPAC’s “A Christmas Story,” and the Ballroom on High’s Christmas Showcase.

There’s a full schedule of events and family fun at the Carousel, Pottsgrove Manor and the Hill School on Sunday too. Check out the calendar here!


Blog at WordPress.com.

Up ↑

%d bloggers like this: