WINONA, Minn. — The Minnesota Conservatory for the Arts (MCA), in collaboration with the Winona Friendship Center, will offer three eight-week workshops for adults ages 55+. The workshops are free, thanks to a generous grant from Aroha Philanthropies, and will be focused on painting, dance, and a special intergenerational program in multimedia art.

Stories that Move will run Wednesdays, April 4-May 23, noon to 1:30 p.m. at MCA, located at 1164 W. Howard (10th) St. This movement-based workshop will guide participants through the choreographic process. Sessions will consist of a warmup, community building exercises, dance composition basics, and a cool down. All are welcome, regardless of dance background and experience.

Multi-Generational Collage will run Wednesdays, June 6-Aug. 1 (no July 4), noon to 1:30 p.m. at the Winona Friendship Center, 251 Main St. This intergenerational workshop invites older adults and youth ages 7-12 to explore a variety of collage techniques through group and individual instruction. Participants will experience artistic decision-making and gain understanding of the creative process.

The Ways of Watercolor will run Wednesdays, Sept. 5-Nov. 7 (no Oct. 30), 4:30 to 6 p.m. at MCA. Participants will engage with peers through artistic expression and observation, while immersing themselves in watercolor painting and color mixing. Through group and individual instruction, they’ll learn terms and techniques to create final pieces based on themes of their choice.

Vitality Arts programs inspire and enable older adults to learn, make, and share the arts in ways that are novel, complex, and socially engaging. The work is driven by teaching artists whose creative process and understanding of older adults bring joy, connection, improved health and well-being, and a renewed sense of purpose to older adults in community and residential settings.

MCA was selected as one of only 15 nonprofit organizations throughout Minnesota to receive a grant from Aroha Philanthropies through its new statewide initiative Seeding Vitality Arts MN. Find more information about this initiative at Vitality Arts.

About MCA

The Minnesota Conservatory for the Arts, an affiliate program of Saint Mary’s University, is a nonprofit organization offering programming in dance, music, visual art, and theatre. Classes, lessons, workshops, and camps are offered for students of all ages from birth through older adults at the Valéncia Arts Center. For more information, go to mca.smumn.edu, email mca@smumn.edu, or call 507-453-5500.

About Vitality Arts

The broad field of creative aging encompasses many things: arts education, arts in health care, creativity for those with dementia, and more. Arts education programs — those that inspire and enable older adults to learn, make and share the arts in ways that are novel, complex and socially engaging — make up a subset of the creative aging field. Often referred to as artful aging programs, they are led by teaching artists whose creative process and understanding of older adults bring connection, improved health and well-being, and a renewed sense of purpose to older adults in community and residential settings.

At Aroha Philanthropies, we’ve come to view these programs as even more than artful aging. With the term Vitality Arts, we aim to champion arts programs that keep us vital, joyful and engaged by unleashing the transformative power of creativity in those 55+. More information is available at Vitality Arts.

About Aroha Philanthropies

Aroha Philanthropies is devoted to the transformative power of the arts and creativity, inspiring vitality in those over 55, joy in children and youth, and humanity in adults with mental illness. We believe that learning, making, and sharing art enriches everyone throughout their lifetime. Aroha Philanthropies works to improve the quality of life of people 55+ by encouraging the funding, development, and proliferation of arts programs designed to enhance longer lives, and by advancing the development of professional teaching artists working with those in their encore years.