Wintergreen Arts' New Vision

$8,661 of $15,000 goal

Raised by 53 people in 2 months
Created August 23, 2018
A reading of scenes from John Cariani’s plays in NYC raises funds  for hometown arts center


The Wintergreen Arts Center is a struggling, yet shining beacon of creativity in the northern Maine community of Presque Isle, the small town where Tony Award-nominated actor and playwright, John Cariani, grew up. John participated in arts programs at the William V. Haskell Community Center and at Pine Street Elementary School and Cunningham Middle School. He discovered his love for acting at Presque Isle High School.   

And now he’s a professional actor. He’s appeared in several films and television shows and is currently starring on Broadway in The Band’s Visit which recently won the 2018 Tony Award for Best Musical. John owes his success to the arts programs he had access to as a kid growing up in Presque Isle. 

When he learned about Wintergreen’s financial difficulties, he decided to enlist his castmates from The Band’s Visit—including Tony and Emmy Award winner, Tony Shalhoub—to help raise some money to benefit the arts center.
"The Band Visits Cariani"

Mr. Shalhoub and the company of The Band’s Visit  presented “The Band Visits Cariani,” an evening of scenes from John’s plays, to benefit the Wintergreen Arts Center.  

The one night only event took place on Monday, October 1st at 7:30pm at the Romulus Linney Courtyard Theatre at the Pershing Square Signature Center in midtown Manhattan.  

The Band Visits Cariani” featured scenes from John’s well known play, Almost, Maine, which explores love and loss in rural northern Maine. Almost, Maine has become one of the most popular plays in the United States with nearly 4000 productions to date. It recently unseated Shakespeare’s A Midsummer Night’s Dream as the most frequently produced play in North American High Schools and has been translated into over a dozen languages. Scenes from three of Cariani’s other plays—LOVE/SICK, Last Gas, and cul-de-sac—were also featured in the evening.
On the connection between his plays and The Band’s Visit, Cariani says:

The Band’s Visit is about love, loss, longing and loneliness in a fictional town in the middle of nowhere in Israel. A lot of my plays are about love,  loss, longing and loneliness in a fictional town in the middle of nowhere in northern Maine. I’m intrigued by the intersection of these two make-believe worlds. And I’m excited to see the actors who appear in The Band’s Visit every night tackle scenes from my plays—and raise some money for a good cause while they’re at it."

Please join John and his fellow Broadway cast members in supporting the Wintergreen Arts Center by donating here.

About Wintergreen Arts Center:

Wintergreen Arts Center is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization founded in 2006 and located in the northern Maine town of Presque Isle. Wintergreen is an organization based on the idea that creativity, advocacy, and community can produce great things.

Our mission is to provide meaningful experiences that encourage an appreciation of the arts, stimulate creativity and innovation, and offer an artistic community space where all are welcome.  

Facebook:  facebook.com/wintergreenarts 
Website:  wintergreenarts.org 

Our Programming:

Our programs include Under the Willow Tree, a Creative Preschool, After School Arts and Summer Arts Programs, Mini Open Studio, First Friday Downtown Art Walk (featuring local artists), Ladies' Art Night, Pizza 'n Art for Teens & Tweens, and more.  We also work with community partners and volunteers to host a variety of fundraising events including our Holiday Signature Events such as Artful Egg, Spooktacular, Family Gingerbread Festival, and Wintergreen Express, which attracts people from central Maine to Canada.

Our Volunteers:

Last year, our 400 volunteers tallied 8,700 total volunteer hours; estimating 1,500 hours volunteered by local college, high school, and middle school students.  Wintergreen is a popular venue for students to earn their Community Service hours.  It takes dozens of young volunteers to staff our singing elves and Santa’s helper positions for our Wintergreen Express event alone. 

 Community collaborations:

Just one example that indicates Wintergreen has gained the support of others who serve our local communities is a recent $25,000 technology grant from MMG Insurance Company.  With this generous grant, Wintergreen now offers digital arts classes.  The larger goal of our collaboration with MMG Insurance is to promote technological literacy by offering fun technology-based, creative programming that leads to positive self-expression and life-long learning.

 Here is a music video (Cruisin’ for a Brusin’) created by our 2018 Summer Arts videography and dance students with the use of our new technology tools:

32374612_153504389676382_r.jpegfacebook.com/wintergreenarts/videos - Cruisin' for a Brusin' 

How you can help:

Please consider donating to this campaign, and sharing it with your friends and family on Facebook, email, Twitter, and text message. Each share makes a real difference! 


Thank YOU for sharing Wintergreen's New Vision:

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We are overwhelmed with the responses, donations, and heartfelt sentiments from so many people. Support for the Wintergreen Arts Center, our students -- the children and adults we serve -- is greatly appreciated. We've far surpassed our original $5,000 goal with current donations of $8,661, so we're raising the bar and setting our hearts on a new $15,000 goal. Thank you to everyone for supporting John Cariani's efforts and keeping an appreciation for the arts alive in northern Maine.
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We've got something to jump and shout about!

We are happy to report that Wintergreen has received a total of $7,250.00 in offline donations bringing our current total (online and offline) as of today, August 28, up to $7, 410.00 cash in hand. One-thousand-five-hundred dollars of this total is earmarked for November rent, the remainder goes to pay off our loan.

Thank you to our donors (many ask to remain anonymous) for your generosity. We'll continue to keep you posted as we move closer to our goal.

Please feel free to give online at our secure GoFundMe page or give us a call at (207) 462-1313 if you prefer to give offline. Thanks again for supporting the Wintergreen Arts Center!
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$8,661 of $15,000 goal

Raised by 53 people in 2 months
Created August 23, 2018
Funds raised will benefit:
Aroostook Arts and Education Center (Wintergreen Arts Center)
Certified Charity
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Presque Isle, ME
EIN: 205036371
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