2023: Year in Review

It’s hard to believe another year is drawing to a close!  This year saw the return of some much-missed favorites as well as new additions to our already-busy calendar.

2023 Members Show

Our February Members’ Show at the Public Library for Union County featured even more work by more members – nearly 90 pieces – than last year’s.  The cases and entryway walls displayed paintings, photographs, pottery, fiber art, and jewelry created by 38 members, five of whom were participating for the first time.  And, for the first time in many years, we were pleased to be able to host an Opening Reception for the show, giving folks a chance to gather, catch up, and check out the artwork.  And, to give visitors opportunities to meet the artists, each Tuesday in February, members were on hand at lunchtime to interact and answer questions.  

In March, Arts Council members and guests enjoyed a Visit with the Curator, a behind-the-scenes peek at “What You Think You Know,” at the Samek Art Museum Downtown.  Co-curator Sarah Hixson described the decisions and work that went into the thought-provoking exhibition.  

Artist Jane Albin with artwork featured in 2023 Celebration of the Arts

For the first time in five years, our spring Celebration of the Arts began in mid-April with a month-long Featured Artist Exhibit.  Work by this year’s Featured Artist Jane Albin filled one entire window at Sora Custom Framing & Gallery, where Jane’s beautiful artwork heralded spring and promised more beautiful things to come.  As a beloved leader in the local arts scene, Jane was the perfect choice for this year’s Featured Artist.  

Despite the morning’s downpours, the Lewisburg Arts Festival drew thousands of visitors downtown.  Colorful rain slickers, funky umbrellas, and patterned wellies added even more pops of bright colors to Market Street, already adorned with artisan-made artwork, while delicious aromas from four different food courts tempted tastebuds.  Though moved indoors, some of the free performances throughout the day were “standing room only.”  And several of our vendors had nothing left to sell at the end of the day.  We are extremely grateful to our legion of volunteers who made this day manageable and to our many sponsors. 

After a four-year hiatus, the Lewisburg Photography Club held its two-week Photography Exhibition, which included 110 photographs by 48 photographers, amateurs as well as professionals.  At the Awards Ceremony on May 6, entrants received recognition as first-, second- and third-place winners in five different subject categories, along with Best of Show, Judges’ Choice, and People’s Choice winners. To encourage young photographers, winners of the Youth (ages 13 to 17) and Children (ages 12 and under) categories were also recognized.  The youngest entrant was two years old!  The exhibition and reception were graciously sponsored by Stephen J. Lindenmuth.  

The two-week Celebration offered numerous opportunities for hands-on art experiences.  A dozen artists, undaunted by the weather, attended the Plein Air Workshop taught by Harrisburg artist Kelly Charlesworth at the Dale-Engle-Walker property outside of town, while May’s Workshop Weekend included chalk art, candying violets, sun-printing and urban sketching.  We are so grateful to Bucknell University for their generous sponsorship, allowing us to offer such a wide variety of free-to-the-public workshops.

Showcasing artwork started during the spring Celebration, the June Plein Air Show at the Public Library for Union County included pieces from 16 artists, including five first-time participants.

During the Awards Ceremony for Lewisburg graduating seniors, we were delighted to award our annual Arts Scholarships to Micah Zook (Performing Arts) and Hannah Kraus (Visual Arts).  We wish them success as they pursue their higher-education goals!    

Music in the Park returned in June to St. Mary’s Street Park, where over 1,200 music lovers gathered for eight weeks of applause-worthy concerts.   The series featured favorite performers such as the Susquehanna Valley Chorale, Penn Central Wind Band, and TL & Kj, as well as a number of newer groups.  We are indebted to the Woodcock Foundation for the Appreciation of the Arts for their long-standing support of this signature event.  

In July, the Arts Council arranged for a private viewing for LAC members and guests ofthe “100 Miles” Regional Juried Exhibition, which featured the work of a number of Arts Council members.  Six LAC members with work in the show took turns speaking about their work and their inspiration.  Dan Hyde, one of the attendees, enjoyed the outing, saying, “The event was educational as well as inspiring!  I especially liked how the artists discussed how and why they created their artwork.  Great event!”  

Our annual Sidewalk Chalk Festival once again drew artists from the Susquehanna Valley as well as visitors from South Carolina and Washington state!  Two separate storms washed away their efforts but didn’t keep folks from having fun making art.  Cub Pack 3538 of Lewisburg posted: “We participated in the Sidewalk Chalk Festival today and had so much fun playing in the rain. This is such a wonderful community event embracing creativity for all. Our scouts impressed with their amazing art abilities! Thank you to Lewisburg Arts Council for their hard work putting together this event!” Kudos to our event sponsor, Sholley Insurance Agency, and to our theme prize and treat sponsors for supporting this family-friendly event!

In August, we were surprised and honored to be recognized by WVIA Radio, celebrating its fiftieth anniversary, with a plaque recognizing the Arts Council for “cultivating community at the intersection of artists and art lovers.” We are grateful to WVIA, which supports the arts across 22 counties in Northeast Pennsylvania and neighboring states.

On one of October’s most beautiful days, more than 50 Lewisburg middle and high school students attended an all-day Student Plein Air Workshop featuring artist Andrea Kratzer at the Dale-Engle-Walker property.  Thanks to our friends at the Linn Conservancy and the Union County Historical Society for making this day possible! 

We wish the weather had been as cooperative for our planned Lewisburg Arts Walk, which was scheduled for October 21. Canceling the event was not an easy call to make, but artists’ easels do not do well in gusty winds.  

Throughout the year, our special-interest groups have been busy offering activities and providing opportunities to enhance and showcase talents.  The Artists’ Guild has held several critiques where members get together to share, brainstorm, and learn from each other.  Guild Chair Barbara Baker frequently shares information about upcoming shows, contests, and opportunities to exhibit.  The Lewisburg Photography Club hosted several in-person presentations and organized weekend Photo Walk outings to explore and photograph nearby places of interest, such as Coburn Tunnel, Alvira Bunkers, and Koons Trail.  Photo Club members share on their Facebook group images taken in response to the monthly photo challenges.  With your Arts Council membership, you have the option to participate in the Artists’ Guild and/or the Photography Club.  Please indicate your interest by checking the appropriate box(es) when you renew your membership.


Twenty-five new members joined the Arts Council this year.  Our mailing list has grown as well, and our Facebook page has over 4,300 followers.

This summer, the Arts Council welcomed new Board member Hillary Cree, who teaches art at Lewisburg High School and is the advisor for the National Art Honor Society.  With Hillary’s help, we look forward to even more opportunities to partner with these arts-active students.

Grateful Thanks

We would be remiss if we did not acknowledge the dedicated volunteers who made all these events and activities happen.  As an all-volunteer organization, we rely on the commitment and community-minded spirit of our organizers and helpers. THANK YOU for making the arts accessible to everyone!  If you’d like to help with plans for 2024 please submit our volunteer form.  We’d love to hear from you!

We are also grateful to you, our members, for your continued support of the Lewisburg Arts Council.  Your financial support enables us to continue doing what we do best:  connecting our community and the arts!  

We hope you will renew your membership.  If you can, please help us grow our membership by inviting friends, neighbors, and colleagues to join you in supporting the Lewisburg Arts Council and home-grown arts.  And, if you find that circumstances allow you to be a little more generous, know that we will continue to use your contribution wisely to benefit our community.

Please Save These 2024 Dates

  • Saturday, April 27 – Lewisburg Arts Festival
  • Saturday, May 4 – Plein Air Day
  • Friday, July 5 – Sidewalk Chalk Festival (rain date Saturday, July 6)

And, in case you hadn’t heard, we have some exciting news to share …

A Place to Call Home

Thanks to the Union County Historical Society, we now have an actual, physical home!  We will be sharing space with UCHS on the first floor of the Annex of the former Packwood House, located on North Water Street (facing the river).  

Our work is only just beginning … transforming wishes and dreams into programs and activities.  

We know you have missed events like the Indoor Art Exhibit.  We know you are hungry for opportunities to expand your art interests, to gather and share, to learn from and delight in the creativity of others.

In the meantime, we’ll keep you apprised of plans, upcoming events, and local art news via email and Facebook and right here on our website!