The arts take center stage in downtown Riverhead this evening, where the second annual JumpstART will showcase public arts projects from 5 to 10 p.m.

Most art installations can be visited throughout the evening and all are activities are free (except a Martha Clara wine tasting at the East End Arts carriage house, where a $5 donation to the arts organization is requested for three tastings.)

JumpstART is an exercise in “creative placemaking,” an effort that leverages the power of the arts, culture and creativity to animate public and private spaces, rejuvenate structures and streetscapes, improve local business viability and public safety, and bring diverse people together to celebrate, inspire, and be inspired, according to the National Endowment for the Arts, which in 2010 published a white paper on creative placemaking for the Mayors’ Institute on City Design

“In creative placemaking, partners from public, private, non-profit, and community sectors strategically shape the physical and social character of a neighborhood, town, city, or region around arts and cultural activities,” the authors of the paper wrote.

Barnaby Evans speaking  with students from the urban studies program at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, which has honored Evans with an award for his "creative placemaking' efforts in Providence.
Barnaby Evans speaking during a WaterFire Providence lighting with students from the urban studies program at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, which has honored Evans with an award for his “creative placemaking’ efforts in Providence. File photo: Peter Blasl

Barnaby Evans’ WaterFire installation in Providence, Rhode Island, is the leading example of the success of creative placemaking initiatives. Evans, who is interested in bringing his WaterFire installation to the Peconic Riverfront, has said it was the first JumpstART event last year that piqued his interest in downtown Riverhead as a potential site for his world-renowned installation.

Hundreds attended the first JumpstART event last August to enjoy public art, music, dance, drumming, theater, poetry and more. The event was well-received by the community and local government leaders alike. Town Supervisor Sean Walter spoke of the event in glowing terms. “It’s the way Main Street has to be and should be every weekend,” he said.

East End Arts executive director Pat Snyder first pitched the concept to the town board in December 2013.

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Dancing, drumming and poetry filled the air on the grounds of East End Arts during the first annual JumpstART event in August 2014. File photo: Peter Blasl

Tonight’s activities:
5 – 7 p.m. East End Arts’ 4th Annual National Show “The Figure” Opening Reception in the EEA Gallery, 133 E. Main Street. Refreshments will be served.

5 – 8 p.m. Enjoy a wine tasting event with Martha Clara Vineyards in the EEA Carriage House, located behind the Gallery, 133 E. Main Street. $5 donation for three wine tastings supports East End Arts.

5 – 10 p.m. Live music throughout Downtown, presented by East End Arts, including George Cork Maul and Jeannie Woelker; Mike Gari and Steve Shaughnessy; Satisfaction; EEA School students led by Andrea Modugno

4:30 – 5:30 p.m. Peconic Ballet Theatre performance at Grangebel Park Stage

5 – 5:30 p.m. “Improvisation Station” activated by “Becoming Our Spaces”, on East End Arts grounds (133 E. Main Street, Riverhead)

5 – 7 p.m. “Community Intertwined” hands-on mosaic demonstration at River & Roots Community Garden Pathway at Grangebel Park

Sculptor Andrea Manning and theater artist Becca Seibert plan to transform the former reptile store on East Main Street into “a fictional alien planet” wiht an interactive installation for kids called “Space Picnic.” Photo: Denise Civiletti
Sculptor Andrea Manning and theater artist Becca Seibert plan to transform the former reptile store on East Main Street into “a fictional alien planet” wiht an interactive installation for kids called “Space Picnic.” Photo: Denise Civiletti

5 – 7:30 p.m. “Space Picnic” performance, 213 E. Main Street, Riverhead

5 – 10 p.m. “All Hands on Riverhead” presented by Riverhead Free Library, in celebration of their 120th year, on Main Street

5:30 – 6:15 p.m. “Improvisation Workshop” with Thomas Manuel of the Jazz Loft, on East End Arts grounds (133 E. Main Street, Riverhead)

6 – 7 p.m. “A Musical Journey Through Riverhead” concert, 211 E. Main Street, Riverhead

6 – 7 p.m. “Veronica’s World” storytelling in the Fresh Pond one-room schoolhouse on East End Arts grounds (133 E. Main Street, Riverhead)

6 p.m. Hula Hoop Lessons for all ages by Jaime Foley of Whirl & Dirvish, on East End Arts grounds (133 E. Main Street, Riverhead)

6 – 8 p.m. “Dear Riverhead” installation outside the Long Island Science Center

6 – 8 p.m. “The Peconic River Dancers – Secrets of the Wetlands” installation at the Peconic River West Gazebo

6 – 8 p.m. “Thoughts that Swim” installation along the Peconic River

6:15 – 6:30 p.m. “Improvisation Station Parade to Riverside Rediscovered” from East End Arts grounds (133 E. Main Street, Riverhead)

6:30 – 7:15 p.m. “Riverhead Revealed” World Premiere Screening, followed by Q&A (with repeat showings at 8:00, 8:30, 9:00 PM) at 108 Peconic Ave, Riverhead

7 – 7:45 p.m. Percussion & Music Improvisation Experience with the Coltrane Home Foundation, on East End Arts grounds (133 E. Main Street, Riverhead)

Mural artist Drew Kane with his "Chameleon" on the wall of the East Main Street building next to First Congregational Church. Photo: Denise Civiletti
Mural artist Drew Kane with his “Chameleon” on the wall of the East Main Street building next to First Congregational Church. Photo: Denise Civiletti

7 – 8 p.m. “Chameleon Mural” Meet the Artist, at mural location on E. Main Street

7 – 9 p.m. Steel Silk Band performance, presented by Riverhead Townscape at Grangebel Park Stage

7:15 – 7:45 p.m. “A Creative Imaging” presented by “Becoming Our Spaces”, on East End Arts grounds (133 E. Main Street, Riverhead)

8 p.m. Hula Hoop Lessons for all ages by Jaime Foley of Whirl & Dirvish, on East End Arts grounds (133 E. Main Street, Riverhead)

JumpstART artists’ public art projects which will be presented throughout the evening:

Poet and writer Maggie Bloomfield of Westhampton Beach and visual artist Anne Drager of Montauk, NY will present “Words & Birds,” a family-friendly, interactive project promoting poetry and art as pathways toward an emphatic and richly cultural Riverhead;

Classical singer José Coropuna of Laurel will present “A Musical Journey Through Riverhead,” an outdoor vocal recital in celebration of the arts in the community;

Abstract painter Barbara Jones of Greenlawn will present “The Peconic River Dancers – Secrets of the Wetlands,” an outdoor installation which brings to life the magic of dance in the hidden enchanting world of the river spirits;

Painter Drew Kane of Huntington Station will present “Chameleon Mural”;

Video producer Susan Levy of Quogue will present “Riverhead Revealed”, a video art project that profiles people, projects and places in Riverhead;

Visual artist Cara Lynch of Lindenhurst will present “Dear Riverhead”, an installation outside of the Long Island Science Center;

Visual artist Andrea Manning of Babylon and theatre artist Becca Seibert of Babylon: “Space Picnic”, an interactive performance art installation that transforms this storefront into a fully immersive, 360-degree environment in which audiences are invited to explore the sounds, shapes, colors, and textures of a fictional alien planet based in deep sea, rainforest, and microscopic imagery;

Illustrator Samantha Neukirch with a sample of the images she'll create for a mural to adorn a wall inside the downtown playground. Photo: Denise Civiletti
Illustrator Samantha Neukirch with a sample of the images she’ll create for a mural to adorn a wall inside the downtown playground. Photo: Denise Civiletti

Visual artist Samantha Neukirch of Smithtown will present “Blue.exe”, a mixed-media mural project celebrating our local aquatic ecosystem in the 21st century;

Abstract photographer Sarah Prescott of Orient will present “Get Paused,” a photographic memoir told in photographs and words about how a brain tumor and stroke changed the life and art of this artist;

Mosaic artist Linda Purrazzella of Southampton will present “Community Intertwined,” a mosaic at River & Roots Community Garden that will be created with the help of community members;

Illustrator Frank Sofo of East Hampton will present “Veronica’s World,” a project related to several children’s books that the artist wrote and illustrated based on a fictional story of a cat named Veronica who becomes a companion of great artists like Vincent van Gogh, Claude Monet, and many more;

Interdisciplinary artist Courtney Surmanek of Centereach will present “Becoming Our Spaces,” a creative collective dedicated to opening up communal spaces that encourage expressive freedom;

Painter Stephanie Walsh of Medford will present “Thoughts that Swim”, a project that harnesses the movement of swimming fish in association with the similar way in which our thoughts and emotions are processed.

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Denise Civiletti
Denise is a veteran local reporter, editor, attorney and former Riverhead Town councilwoman. Her work has been recognized with numerous awards, including investigative reporting and writer of the year awards from the N.Y. Press Association. She is a founder, owner and co-publisher of this website.Email Denise.