Grantee Spotlight: Elizabeth Park Conservancy

Elizabeth Park

Whether you’re looking to take date night outside or snap the perfect picture for Instagram, nothing says summer in Greater Hartford quite like Elizabeth Park and America’s oldest public rose garden.

Home to over 800 varieties of new and old roses, the rose garden is the center of Elizabeth Park. Not only is it the first municipal rose garden in the United States, but it’s the third largest in the nation today. Theodore Wirth began designing the rose garden in September 1903; the garden opened nine months later in June 1904. Initially, the garden was home to approximately 190 varieties of roses. Today, there are over 15,000 rose bushes and over 800 varieties. Read More

Hartford Residents: The Wadsworth Atheneum Belongs To You

Wadsworth Atheneum Museum of Art

Photo credit: Wadsworth Atheneum Museum of Art

In an unprecedented move, our friends and grantees at the Wadsworth Atheneum Museum of Art will offer free admission to all Hartford residents effective immediately. “The Atheneum belongs to you,” said Thomas J. Loughman, Director and CEO of the Wadsworth at Tuesday’s press conference. As the largest public art museum in Connecticut, and the oldest in the country, the Wadsworth holds a legacy of firsts: from being the first museum in the U.S. to purchase works by Caravaggio and Salvador Dali to spearheading a collection of contemporary American art. Read More

Arts Innovation Day Recap: Building Strategic Partnerships

Bushnell Performance

Photo courtesy of The Bushnell Center for the Performing Arts

By Patrick Langevin, The Bushnell Center for the Performing Arts

Having recently moved back to Connecticut after fourteen years in New York City, being a part of a community in a professional, creative and personal capacity has been of great importance to me.  Finding my professional home at The Bushnell Center for the Performing Arts in the development department has given me the opportunity to be a part of a major cultural institution in Hartford that has long-standing relationships with loyal patrons and the business community in the area. I have quickly found out that although corporate sponsorship is of great importance, the individual relationships with members in our business community is what holds true value. Read More

Arts Innovation Day Recap: How to Keep Your Mother Happy


Photo courtesy of TheaterWorks Hartford

By Michael McKiernan, TheaterWorks

Maintaining a relationship is important. Ask any PR professional. Or my mother.

Thanks to the Greater Hartford Arts Council and the Arts Innovation Day, I had the pleasure of learning from a few professionals the “Unofficial Public Relations Guide for Maintaining Relationships with the Media”.  Or UPRGFMRWTM for short. Now, in no particular order… Read More

Arts Innovation Day Recap: Marketing for Dummies

Arts Innovation Day Recap

The Greater Hartford Arts Council’s “Arts Innovation Day” workshop held at Aetna on June 3, 2016

By Jenny Haskins, New Britain Museum of American Art

Similar to many other art museum professionals, my educational background is not in Marketing so much as Art History/Fine Arts. However, like any institution with a consumer base, marketing is a must! As the Copywriter at the New Britain Museum of American Art for just under a year, clever writing comes easy—most of the time. Nevertheless, Greater Hartford Arts Council’s Arts Innovation Day was highly beneficial in allowing me to better understand the marketing side of my position and tap into the Museum’s web-based audience. Read More

Arts Innovation Day Recap: A Nonprofit Heart but a For-Profit Discipline

Arts Innovation Day Recap - HR Policies

The Greater Hartford Arts Council’s “Arts Innovation Day” workshop held at Aetna on June 3, 2016

By: Tracey Mozdzierz of Judy Dworin Performance Project

How does a small nonprofit navigate around the many challenges of employing and engaging their staff?  Who are our staff members?  What is a contractor?  Are we responsible for our volunteers too? We love and need them all but at what point does the organization need to create policies and procedures?  Jill Silliman, HR Director for Prudential Retirement and Joann Gomes, HR Director for the Max Restaurant Group navigated us through some of our tougher questions in their presentation at Arts Innovation Day, June 3rd. Read More

Arts Innovation Day Recap: Why the Comfort Zone is Not the End Zone

Arts Innovation Day

by Amanda Young, Wadsworth Atheneum

“I specialize in taking people outside of their comfort zone…only to show them how powerful they can be when they get there.”

It was a rainy, dreary, muggy, dim, gloomy, [insert grim adjective here] morning in Hartford. My energy level was at zero minus whatever it is when you are doubting yourself and your life choices, not to mention your outfit. I was tempted to sit in my comfort zone of a dark corner at Tisane eating breakfast bars and chugging coffee rather than venture outside of that comfort zone to attend a session called Storytelling: Refining your Elevator Pitch at GHAC’s Arts Innovation Day. However, I made it across the West End just in time to hear Ann Kelley, 2nd Vice President, Relationship Manager at Travelers, utter the words above, which pretty much re-calibrated my engine. Read More