-Courtesy of En Route Marketing
Together, CraftNOW and Philadelphia Parks & Recreation are joining forces to bring the excitement and imagination of hands-on craft into Philadelphia’s neighborhood rec centers. Through its CraftNOW Create program, CraftNOW is coordinating with partner organizations to deliver over 6,000 hours of craft instruction to 3,000 children across 120 locations. From July 6 to August 13, children ages 6 to 12 can participate in camps throughout the city Monday through Friday, 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. To register and view the list of summer camp locations, click here.
In addition to in-person activities, CraftNOW has collaborated with the Philadelphia Museum of Art to provide take-home kits with art supplies along with free admission passes to the Philadelphia Museum of Art for each camper and up to five members of their family. Crafting kits will be distributed to campers at participating recreation centers. This ambitious initiative has allowed CraftNOW to work with its network of artists and institutions to continue its longstanding efforts in providing programming that enriches the local communities.
“It has always been a goal of mine to see craft activities in Philadelphia’s neighborhood rec centers,” said Leila Cartier, executive director of CraftNOW. “These centers are found in every corner of the city and can provide neighborhoods with a sense of unity, access to much-needed resources, and a safe place for recreation. It is important that young people are introduced to hands-on activity for a multitude of reasons. Children can be educated through craft activities, discover a unique career path, and find joy and pride in making something themselves.”
Thanks to the CraftNOW Create program, this year’s summer camps will offer a variety of craft activities provided by Al-Bustan Seeds of Learning, American Swedish Historical Museum, Asian Arts Initiative, The Clay Studio, Fabric Workshop and Museum, Fleisher Art Memorial, The Handwork Studio, Philadelphia Museum of Art, Philadelphia’s Magic Gardens, Tyler School of Art and Architecture, and University of the Arts. CraftNOW Create provides family-friendly programming that seeks to foster the next generation of artists and makers through arts education. For the list of craft activities, please visit Craftnowphila.org/summer-camp/.
CraftNOW is a Philadelphia-based nonprofit arts organization launched in 2015 by a consortium of individuals, galleries, museums, universities, retailers, and civic organizations. Though diverse in background, CraftNOW has been united in its desire to capitalize upon Philadelphia’s outstanding craft resources and highlight the city’s continuing role in defining the future of craft. To further its commitment to makers and craftspeople, CraftNOW is implementing several other new initiatives in 2021 aimed at strengthening Philadelphia’s craft community and economic impact. Under the newly launched CraftECON, these programs include resource mapping of retailers and gallerists; assembling a regional artisan database; creating artisan workshops focused on business skills; resource mapping of service providers; sponsoring digital programs highlighting artisans; connecting makers with developers/architects. CraftNOW is currently in the process of applying for 501c3 status, allowing the organization to explore additional and more significant funding streams to support its expanded mission.
Additionally, CraftNOW celebrates and showcases Philadelphia’s contemporary craft scene throughout CraftMONTH, a series of events in November alongside the Philadelphia Museum of Art Craft Show. CraftNOW’s free annual symposium – a signature event of CraftMONTH – provides a platform for critical discourse in contemporary craft and is set to take place on Friday, November 5, 2021. Combined with their ongoing programming, CraftNOW is in a position to remain an impactful resource to the city’s craft scene while promoting it nationally and internationally for years to come.