The Sturgis Center for the Arts provides many different opportunities for the citizens of all ages in the Sturgis area. They have created an environment that ecourages and accepts all who participate in the many different programs they offer. Michelle, Rick, and all the teachers we have encountered give 110%. The small community the center serves has always struggled and the last year has been a tough one. The center is a warm,comfortable oasis that on any given day(or evening) will find an assortment of people of all ages learning, sharing,and enjoying the many services they provide.The center has improved the quality of our familys' life this past year by opening the door to the beauty of music for our daughters. They have experienced the fun and excitement of learning to play and perform musical instruments as well as giving back to the community in some small way. The atmosphere of the center is one that even an eleven year old boy wants to experience! The center is a vibrant part of the community and very much an example of why ART is the heART of a community.
In my opinion, the Sturgis Center for the Arts fills a need in our community that no other organization has been able to do. From the preschool art discovery classes that my son participated in to the painting classes that my mother participated in to Spanish lessons to tutoring to music lessons, the Center seems to have activities and events for every interest and every age group. Michelle is very community-oriented, even offering to let me use their space for free to teach my yoga classes. In this small town where most kids used to have the excuse of having nothing to do, the Sturgis Center for the Arts is turning things around, offering positive, creative, educational, and fun experiences for people of all ages.
I've been involved with the Sturgis Center for the Arts since its opening as a student, as a performer, and as a member of the public. As an older adult, it was wonderful for me to be in an art class together with young children and explore different ways of expressing ourselves. I also participated in guitar and writing workshops with adults. As a storyteller performing at the Center, I appreciate how well Michelle, Rick, and the volunteers set up the sound system, arrange the space, and attract the audience. They go out of their way to decorate for special occasions. As a member of the public I've come for art shows, book discussions, to hear Lakota speakers, to sit in on Friday night jams, and to just hang out. I love seeing the latest projects on the walls and tables and always feel welcome. Many of the other comments have mentioned how great a place this is for kids. It's very comfortable for adults as well.
I serve as one of the instructors at Sturgis Center for the Arts. Never have I enjoyed such a musically and artistic atmosphere! Michelle and Rick have done a wonderful job of setting up this center and promoting the enrichment of music. They are so supportive of everyone, young or old. The students enjoy taking lessons at SCA where there is every music book and instrument they can imagine right there at their fingertips. There is plenty of opportunity to learn to play together or as a soloist. It is a safe place to come and hang out, and jam like so many kids yearn for.
Sturgis Center for the Arts is the only organization in the city of Sturgis that promotes integrity of its citizens for the sole purpose of enrichment. Michelle, Rick and all the volunteers have provided opportunities that people of all ages would never have been given without their vision of an arts community. What hatched the Sturgis Center for the Arts was when Michelle tried to enroll her daughter in a local music class, she was denied enrollment because the daughter was a child. This prompted Michelle to open an art facility that allowed anyone who wants to enrich their lives access to these resources. This story stands testament to the personal investment in community that Michelle felt was her responsibility when she suffered the rejection by a stagnant and selective 'community arts program.' I have worked with numerous art centers offering workshops and classes, Sturgis Center for the Arts was the only one to offer such a wide variety of music classes. Many at risk teens have found dedication in the music community built by this Center. Opportunities provided by the Center's open mic nights, battle of the bands, and Bike Art and Music (BAM) festivals provide confidence and a variety of mentors in a variety of genres.
For children and adults in Sturgis and the outlying area, the Sturgis Center for the Arts is a welcoming gathering location. Activities that I have enjoyed there include: a weekly preschool art class which I took my 4 year old grandson to, Halloween storytelling by the Black Hills Storytellers,introductory painting for adults, and, most recently, teaching Spanish for the summer enrichment program as well as tutoring reading. All who enter the Center feel warmly accepted and broaden their horizons.
As member of the board of directors I take very little credit as to how great the center fills a niche on our community for people of all ages and walks of life. Rick and Michele Grocek had a vision and they didn't give up until they reached their goal of establishing an Art Center in Sturgis. Their leadership and dedication is an inspiration to me to keep working on a plan to see the Center grow. So many lives have been enriched through the Center. It is truly a blessing for our town.
The Sturgis Center for The Arts is an amazing place that brings such a diverse population together with a common denominator- an interest in the Arts. All with a pleasant and welcoming aura. What a wonderful place for people of all ages!! Our son utilized their guitar lessons, sold an amp and participated in many "open jam" sessions. They also went out of their way to help them start a band, even going so far as to help with T-shirt sponsorship and so much more. I was able to take a group of teenagers to a community meeting, where they spoke about their passion for the Center for the Arts and discovered what advocating meant, and were so hopeful that a new building would be acquired. They also volunteered during the rally to move all of the equipment, which instilled in them a sense of community. Recently the Board I serve on (Piedmont Park Board) was able to partner with them for their BAM (Bike and Music)festival providing a place for the bikes to unload. Hopefully next year we can give them a greater send off!!
The Sturgis Center for the Arts has been a wonderful place for children of all ages. At anytime during the day, one might see piano lessons, watercolor art lessons, ukelele group sessions, charcoal sketching, pottery, or people gathered around sharing their lives with others. The teachers are caring and considerate of the children and adults that they teach. Tony Hill built a banjo and learned to play so he could teach my son to play. Michelle and Rick encourage good behavior in the children and young adults that like to "hang out" at the Art Center. They allow creative freedoms coupled with thoughtfulness of others. Keep up the great work--Sturgis Center for the Arts. Your work and investment in the lives of the people of our community is priceless. Nancy Vencill
We have been so thankful for the Sturgis Center for the Arts. It has been a tremendous source for a variety of music lessons as well as a variety of art projects. My oldest daughter loves going there after school. They have also provided her with opportunities to use her music skills in the community. She's gotten the opportunity to play piano at various nursing homes in our community, as well as at a Holiday Open House that is held at our Community Center. Those experiences have been wonderful confidence builders for her. Everyone is so kind and helpful and they really try to help her reach her full artistic potential. They have been a great addition to our community! I cannot imagine our community without them!