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Center for Regional Excellence to host Regional Arts Summit, ‘Gandhi, King, Ikeda’ exhibit this month

On Friday, Oct. 17, the IU Northwest Center for Regional Excellence (CRE) will host the Third Annual Regional Arts Summit in collaboration with South Shore Arts. This year’s theme for the day-long event is “Outreach and Advocacy: Adventures in Arts Education.”

Also, on Monday, Oct. 20, the CRE, the Northwest Indiana Race Relations Council and Soka Gakkai International — USA will host the opening reception for the acclaimed exhibit “Gandhi, King, Ikeda: A Legacy of Building Peace” and the youth-oriented exhibit “Victory Over Violence,” starting at 12 p.m. in the Savannah Center.

This year’s Arts Summit will feature morning discussion sessions and two guest speakers: Arnold Aprill, who is founding and creative director of Chicago Arts Partnerships in Education (CAPE); and Ra Joy, executive director of the Illinois Arts Alliance. The afternoon session will consist of a panel discussion on successful education partnerships, led by Towle Theatre managing director Jeff Casey, along with vocal, theatrical and dance performances from arts-grant recipients.

The Summit will provide an opportunity for artists, arts organizations, and arts providers to network, communicate, and collaborate while gaining valuable insight into the critical areas of arts education and advocacy. In addition, the Summit will address how arts activities can be used to celebrate the diversity in our region and foster diverse relationships, ensuring the availability of resources for a community rich in arts and culture.

Arts Summit participants are invited to bring promotional or marketing material (100 copies) for display throughout the day. The conference is funded by South Shore Arts, the Indiana Arts Commission, a state agency, and the National Endowment for the Arts, a federal agency.

Due to September’s flood closures, a related gallery reception for the exhibit “Fusion of the Arts,” which was scheduled for Sept. 26, was canceled. This event will be incorporated into the Oct. 17 Summit. The original exhibit, which consisted of a variety of artworks from Northwest Indiana artists, is no longer on display, but images of the artwork will be shown in a slide presentation in the Savannah Auditorium beginning at 3:30 p.m., and awards will be presented to the winning artists. The Summit’s closing reception will begin at 4:30 p.m. in the Savannah Center.

For more information on the Third Annual Regional Arts Summit, or to reserve a spot, contact Shari Pettis at South Shore Arts by calling (219) 836-1839, extension 100. The deadline for registration is Monday, Oct. 13.

The “Gandhi, King, Ikeda” exhibit is a moving visual presentation that follows the lives and philosophies of Mohandas K. Gandhi, the Rev. Martin Luther King, Jr., and Daisaku Ikeda, the latter of whom is an internationally recognized author, poet and peace activist from Japan. This exhibit will run through Oct. 31 in the Savannah Center.

A separate but related exhibit, “Victory Over Violence,” will look at different forms of violence and their root causes, and will consider ways that young people may resolve conflicts and overcome difficult or stressful situations without employing physical, emotional or verbal violence. This exhibit is part of the youth initiative Victory Over Violence, which began in 1999 as a response to growing concerns over the rise in youth-related violence.

At the Oct. 20 reception, Lawrence Carter, Sr., Ph.D., the first Dean of the Martin Luther King, Jr. International Chapel of Morehouse College in Atlanta, will deliver the reception’s keynote address. The event will also include a “peace rap” performance, a short film, an awards ceremony, and a ribbon cutting.

The public is invited to attend this opening reception for these thought-provoking exhibits. The Savannah Center is located in the southeast corner of the main campus parking lot at 33rd Avenue and Broadway in Gary, Ind. For more information, contact CRE Assistant Director Victoria Brockett at (219) 980-6978, or email her at



Media Contact:

Christopher Sheid

Michelle Searer

Related Links

Center for Regional Excellence

Victory Over Violence

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