Arts Festival – Networking Night

Jeannette Hay, Tom Fair, Petrina Sharp, George Alger, Tracy Repchuk, Becky Mate

September 30, 2004 – Hollywood: Tonight was the second evening of art celebration as part of the Artists For A Better World International 5-day Arts Festival. This event was held inside the glass Garden Pavilion at Celebrity Centre International. Artists, friends and families came to hear and network with art leaders and social betterment representatives.

Speakers, performers and attendees exchanged accomplishments, plans and news of their various activities for one of the most popular events of the Arts Festival: Networking Night.

Surrounded with displays of outstanding visual artwork, both artists and community leaders came together to share the news of their group’s activities and invite others to connect up to them. Master of ceremonies for the evening, Richard Stewart, introduced President of The Way to Happiness Foundation International, Lance Miller, spoke of the expansion of his organization and how attendees can order their own cover of this common-sense booklet to better living. Mr. Miller presented the brand-new Artists For A Better World International Way To Happiness booklet to the audience. This booklet includes 21 ideas to lead a better life, including “Take care of yourself,” “Love and help children,” “Set a good example,” and “Seek to live with the truth.” This booklet features cover art by AFABW Int member and Director, Jeannette Hay. Mr. Miller also spoke in support of the mutual social improvement goals of Artists For A Better World International and The Way To Happiness Foundation.

The audience was treated to a performance from renown multi-talented artist and founder of the Rose Breast Cancer Society, Carmelita Pitman, who also spoke on getting artists to join together to create a better world.

Tom Fair, Executive Producer for the Artists for a Better World International Arts Festival invited musicians to join him in the Performing Artists Association, which amongst other things produces an Open Mic event monthly, held in the Celebrity Center’s Garden Pavilion. Tom was also one of the featured performers for the evening, as well as Kari Hillery.

Representing the Visual Artists Association was Petrina Sharp who was responsible for all Visual Arts displays throughout the duration of the festival. Petrina explained that the artwork surrounding the audience in the Pavilion would be voted on during the festival by attendees and that this would result in the twelve most popular images being used to produce the very first Artists for a Better World International art calendar for the coming 2005.

On the art of the spoken word were two representatives, Mick Coventry of the Renaissance Speakers, and Tracy Repchuk, Federation of Poets/Living Poetry Society. Mick explained that his groups was a Toastmaster International club devoted to making effective communication a worldwide reality and so invited others to join his club that meets weekly. Canadian Poet Tracy Repchuk told of the launch of her well-received poets newsletter and her plans for expansion on this internationally.

Dan Locke, represented AHA! (Artists Helping Artists!), a networking organization for all artists of every genre which includes the “AHA! Round Tables” network meetings. These “round table” meetings occur 10 to 12 times a month in arts communities throughout Southern California region including Orange County and San Diego. AHA! Also publishes the “Creative Line” magazine, which now reaches over 50,000 artists and arts lovers with every issue throughout Southern California. In 2001 Glenn Horton, the founder of the AHA! network, created the first Call to Arts! Summits which are arts festivals that occur twice a year and produce juried art shows and displays, seminars and workshops for all art genres.

The audience also heard from Director Becky Mate, of C.A.F.E. (Creative Artists For Expansion), a local Hollywood art networking group. Meeting weekly, this group encourages artists to produce their craft and helps them to gain confidence in their abilities to further expand and flourish in their chosen art form.

President of Artists for a Better World International, George Alger, spoke of the AFABW Int activities achieved in 2004 and briefed the audience on plans to wrap up the year as well as for 2005. Such plans include a 2005 AFABW Int Visual Arts Calendar; a poetry compilation book, entitled Bamboo Souls; another music CD — this one to benefit social improvement programs in Africa; and a brand-new AFABW Int website in which artists will be able to create their own AFABW Int web pages to feature their art. He applauded all groups that participate in helping to build a better world. “AFABW Int is dedicated to building a worldwide network of artists who share a vision of creating a better world through aesthetics.”

The evening wrapped as an artists networking party with food and live music and went on long after the performances and speakers on stage had concluded.

Artists For A Better World International is open to artists and art enthusiasts of all religions, nationalities, creeds, races and cultures. In short, any and all who desire to help in the creation of a better world.