Efforts begin to form music and arts booster club for Warwick schools Warwick Parents and community members in the Warwick Valley School District wish to start a new music and arts booster club to help support the K-12 music and arts programs in our schools. The kickoff meeting for this new club was held on Oct. 11 with about 40 in attendance, including many teachers, parents and community members. As with any new club, much is to be determined - but much was also accomplished at this first meeting. A steering committee was formed from volunteers including representatives of the music program, the arts program, parents with backgrounds in fund raising and grant-writing, and an administrator-liaison. What all agreed upon is that Warwick is a community consisting of many musicians and artists and that a music and arts booster club could be supported not only by parents, but by professionals and enthusiasts alike. Parents spoke about the positive influence these programs have on their children, and teachers made it clear they are passionate about their art and musicianship, and about passing that passion on to their students. Concern was expressed about what might happen to these programs as school budgets become increasingly difficult. Already this year, as extracurricular activities in the school district were pared down due to budget constraints, programs have been cut due to lack of funding, including some art clubs in the elementary schools, jazz band at the high school and Odyssey of the Mind. Band director Chris Persad has, on his own time, brought the high school jazz band back this year. The booster club steering committee has been charged with establishing organizational structure, looking into legal aspects of forming a booster club and determining the needs of the arts and music programs in the district. If you are a parent in our school district, a music or art educator, a local musician or artist or just a patron of the arts, you can help keep our excellent music and arts programs growing by joining and supporting the new music and arts booster club. The next meeting will take place on Wednesday, Nov. 16, at 7 p.m. in the Dorothy C. Wilson Education Center at the Middle School. All interested community members are welcome. Warwick Valley High School hosts anti-bullying musical on Oct. 20 Warwick The next stop for the Orange County tour of “Letters to Daddy: The Musical Key to Bully-Free,” will be Thursday, Oct. 20, at 7 p.m. at Warwick Valley High School auditorium. Sixteen young actors and actresses from across the Orange County received grand reviews following the musical’s opening last week at SUNY Orange. The production’s topic resonates locally as well as across the country. The curtain opens at 7 p.m. Admission is free. An evening for Farm Relief Sugar Loaf The Orange County Citizens Foundation and the Orange County Arts Council will host a benefit for Farm Relief featuring MoonRain, a special performance work by Robert Whitman,on Saturday, Oct. 15, at 7 p.m. at the Kurt Seligmann Art Galleries and Homestead, 23 White Oak Drive in Sugar Loaf. RSVP to 469-9459, online at www.occitizensfoundation.org, or e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org. Donations are: $500: Two tickets to the performance, one limited edition print of a recently discovered original Kurt Selgmann etching plate, a pre-performance guided tour of the Kurt Seligmann Art Galleries and Studio, an event program signed by Robert Whitman and admittance to a post-performance cocktail reception with the artist. $150: One ticket to the performance, an event program signed by Robert Whitman and admittance to a post-performance cocktail reception with the artist. $50: One ticket to the performance and admittance to post-performance cocktail reception with the artist. Weird Warwick Warwick The Albert Wisner Public Library will host an exhibit and program about the supernatural in Warwick history on Tuesday, Oct. 25, at 6:30 p.m. The Black Dirt Storytelling Guild will perform local historic ghost stories that have been disturbed in their graves and are rising again for this special performance. A companion exhibit featuring Witches, Ghost Stories, UFOs, and objects of luck and protection from the collection of the Warwick Historical Society will run in the Wisner Local History Room throughout October. The free program is open to Warwick school district adults, teens and attentive listeners age 10 and up with parent. Registration required; sign up at www.albertwisnerlibrary.org, or call the library help desk at 987-1047 menu option 3. The AARP Driver Safety Program Salutes Veterans Warwick In a salute to veterans and their spouses, AARP’s Driver Safety Program will waive the normal course registration fee during the month of November. Here is an opportunity reacquaint yourself with the rules of the road in thanks for your service to our country. On Nov. 19 the AARP’s Driver Safety Program will be offered at the Albert Wisner Public Library from 9:30 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. To register for this class call Bill Stelz at 986-5124 or AARP (888) 227-7669 or www.aarp.org. Veterans should bring proof of service to the class on Nov. 19. Upon completion of the course, you will qualify for an automobile insurance discount given by your insurance company. Give blood at The Forest of Fear and get free admission Tuxedo The Forest of Fear will host blood drives on Friday, Oct. 14, and the following Friday, Oct. 21, at its Halloween attraction, located across from the New York Renaissance Faire at 600 Route 17A in Tuxedo. Anyone eligible and who donates during the blood drive between 6:30 and 10:30 p.m. will receive one free admission into The Forest of Fear, which includes entrance into the Slaughterhouse, 3 free carnival rides and nightly shows (8:45 and 10:45 p.m.). The blood drive is coordinated with Community Blood Services, a not-for-profit organization provides blood and blood products to more than 30 hospitals in the NJ/NY region. To schedule an appointment to donate blood at The Forest of Fear, call 201-251-3703 (NJ) or 845-220-2030 (NY). You will receive your free admission pass at the time of your donation. Walk in’s are also welcome.