The Arts and Culture committee did not disappoint with a wonderful and exciting day for Leadership Pinellas Class of 2018!
Arts & Culture committee chair, Bob Childress ‘11 welcomed the class and dubbed the program day as “fun day” before introducing members of the committee. We were treated to a first-class breakfast from the Art Institute of Tampa while enjoying panoramic views of the Clearwater Intercoastal Waterway.
Steve Weinberger ‘03, CEO of the Clearwater Jazz Holiday, provided overview of the economic and educational impact the world-class event has on Pinellas County. He involved the class with a fun interactive topics game by having us draw topics from a bucket. This allowed us the opportunity to learn more details about the history of Jazz Holiday and about the fabulous Jazz Force team. The Jazz Force team is an all-volunteer-driven operations team charged with putting the festival together. Additionally, we learned about a new program, supported by the Clearwater Jazz Foundation, designed to educate a diverse group of third and fifth graders with an interactive musical journey within Pinellas County schools and family centers.
The day did not end there! The LP Class traveled to the Duncan McClellan Gallery in St. Petersburg, with the artist himself treating the class to an overview of glassblowing art and a private tour of his gallery and studio which he shares with other artists locally and around the world. The Class witnessed the process of a large bowl coming to life during a glassblowing demonstration highlighting the significance of this unique art and that it is alive and well – before traveling to the next stop of the day.
At the Starlight Sapphire, the Captain exclaimed “All Aboard!” and we began our next journey along Pinellas County’s picturesque intercoastal. While the class enjoyed the water views, we enjoyed a delectable lunch while being educated by the Clearwater Jazz Educational Band who took us on a historical journey through time and the regions that impacted each era making jazz what it is today. After being enriched by the music, singing, clapping, and laughing and with bellies full of great food, it was time to dock and head to the next location – the Salvador Dali Museum.
Here, the class was about to embrace the visionary explosion of unusual art through a private tour, and it did not disappoint. Even the most seasoned visitor of the Dali found the life-size masterpieces explode with historical tales and imaginative expressions. We thoroughly enjoyed the historical educational exposure to Dali’s wildly imaginative displays of his life’s work.
Did someone say chocolate?! How about William Dean Chocolates! Well, we arrived at our last destination of the day, donned blue hairnets and entered the magical world of WD chocolates for a behind-the-scenes exploration. The LP Class sampled delectable chocolates, sponsored by Solace Insurance, while Bill provided a historical overview of his chocolate masterpieces. If the sweet rich smells and the tastes of the original flavors were not enough to fill our senses, Bill’s courageous story of his journey would be. He shared his passions, desires, fears, successes and words of wisdom including “… find happiness in what you do every day!” We concluded our day by stocking up on some chocolates and thanking Bill and his staff for their time and talents.
As the LP Class traveled back to the Clearwater Jazz Holiday site, conversations filled the bus and we concluded the Arts and Culture Day threaded educational experiences toward a therapeutic impact throughout our communities. Well done, Art and Culture Committee! Well Done!!