Art Center set to host annual Gala

ELKINS — The Arts Center is offering individuals an evening of music, food and fun this weekend as they host their largest fundraiser of the year.

The organization’s 17th annual gala fundraiser will kick off at 6 p.m. Friday. The theme of this year’s gala is “Caribbean Island Adventure.”

In addition to being The Arts Center’s largest fundraiser of the year, the event is also the opening reception for the Gala Jurored Art Exhibit, featuring artists from around the state and beyond.

Kurt Barkley, executive director of The Arts Center, explained that this year’s event is casual and encourages community members to attend.

“Our gala is the perfect opportunity for people to get together in a casual and fun environment to have a good time, network, reconnect with others in the community they haven’t seen for a while, all while having a wonderful meal, experience a world-class art exhibit, enjoy live music, and of course, support The Arts Center,” Barkley said.

“We chose this year’s theme because it reflects a more casual, laid-back approach that more people can enjoy. For many people, when they hear the word, ‘gala,’ they automatically assume tuxedos and evening gowns. Nothing could be further from the truth,” he continued. “This year, we’re encouraging everyone to dress comfortably, which includes the gaudiest Hawaiian shirt you own, just as you might wear if you were on vacation somewhere tropical. Have a straw hat? Wear it. We just want people to enjoy the evening.”

The evening will feature a variety of Caribbean cuisine and desserts, raffles, 50/50’s and live music by The Ginsangers. Professional four-piece steel drum band, Pannikin — under the leadership of Morgantown’s Chanler Bailey of CB Studios — will provide classic Caribbean steel drum music, sure to get guests on their feet and dancing.

“We have several beautiful items for our silent auction table, contributed by artisan from all over the region, and we will do as large a 50/50 drawing as we can,” said Barkley.

Artwork by John Terry, Kate Goodrich-Arling, Fran Kordek, Maggi Rhudy, Kevin King, Becky Blackley, Dave Shombert, June Proctor, John Warner, Levi Brown, Debbie Sorensen, Judy Mattson Reed, Laurie Goldstein-Warren, Sandra King, Sara Ward, Alice Sabatino, Noodie Runner, Ruth Blackwell-Rogers, Louise Braddock, Betty Neely, Marjory Moses, Macie Higgins, Katy Crim, and Chet Lowther will be on display during the event.

Barkley also acknowledged the Elkins Rehabilitation and Care Center as the gala’s sponsor.

For additional information about tickets, contact the RCCAC, 304-637-2355, or visit their website: