Crafty Students Contribute to the Community

Latrobe, PA: Students from Lindsey Page’s Latrobe Junior School sculpture class were getting their hands dirty to support Latrobe Art Center as part of the district’s commitment to community service and development. Known as the Empty Bowl Project, juniorhigh students from Latrobe School District created ceramic bowls in order to donate to Latrobe Art Center and assist the organization in its fundraising efforts. The bowls are on display at the gallery and are available for purchase, with all proceeds supporting Latrobe Art Center.

Lindsey Page, the instructor in charge of the project, stated “This sculpture lesson was designed to teach beginning art students about nonprofit organizations in combination with how they can use their artistic skills gained in class to help support their local community. The Latrobe Art Center provides Latrobe with such amazing art experiences and we want to help support them and this project allowed for it to happen. Students not only learned about clay sculpture, but also worked with visiting artist Martha Murphy who helped educate them on what it is like to have your passion also be your career. It was a wonderful experience that I hope to do again next year with my students.”

As a nonprofit membership organization, Latrobe Art Center relies on the generous support of members and donors to fulfill their mission of providing a welcoming environment that encourages individuals to share in the creative process and develop artistically. Latrobe Art Center is grateful for the contributions from the junior high students and applauds the students for channeling their academic achievements toward improving the community.  Like anthropologist Margaret Mead said, “Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful, committed citizens can change the world; indeed, it’s the only thing that ever has.” Members of the community are invited to become a part of this project by visiting the gallery and investing in an original, handcrafted piece of art that has been designed to support community improvement.
Latrobe Art Center would especially like to thank Lindsey Page, Martha Murphy, and the students who participated in the Empty Bowl project for their generous donation, and looks forward to a positive future with such bright and talented community members.

Latrobe Art Center Holds Annual Fred Rogers Juried Exhibit

Latrobe, PA: Latrobe Art Center would like to announce the reception of their annual Fred Rogers Juried Art Show to be held on Thursday, September 4. Director Gabrielle Nastuck states “this exhibition not only provides artists the opportunity to be accepted into the show, but to be chosen for consideration into the Greater Latrobe School District’s highly acclaimed Special Art Collections. Joining the exhibition is Jeannie McGuire as the juror, and Charles “Bud” Gibbons as judge.

Seventy-four pieces from fifty-eight artists have been selected by McGuire to be displayed in the main gallery for the show. The artwork is diverse, including two and three dimensional works, paintings through a variety of mediums, and photography. All of the pieces will be featured in the main gallery of the art center and will be on official display beginning Tuesday, September 2. Judging will take place on Sunday, August 31 through a private evaluation from Gibbons, with the awards being announced during the reception. The judges ballot consists of: Best in Show, Ned J. Nakles Award for Excellence in Oil/Acrylic, Mr. Fred Rogers Award for Innovation, and Awards of Merit. Artists also have the opportunity to be chosen to display their work in Greater Latrobe School District’s Special Arts Collection, a seventy-six year old program designed to expose students to original art.

Latrobe Art Center invites everyone in the area to attend the reception for this event on Thursday, September 4 from 7-9 P.M. Wine, cheese and appetizers will be provided by Lisa Houser of Myriam’s Table. Live music will also be played throughout the gallery, and guests will be able to meet the artists and attend the award show. For more information, call 724-537-7011, visit, or check out their Facebook Page at:

Spring Into Creativity

Latrobe, PA: What is the value of an arts education? As a community art gallery in the heart of downtown Latrobe, Latrobe Art Center recognizes the importance of teaching the arts as a means for children to express themselves and develop their creativity. “Latrobe Art Center proudly announces that over 700 students have participated in the many spring programs offered through partnerships with several schools and organizations. These classes are part of an ongoing commitment towards community engagement and support the art center’s mission of encouraging children to share in the creative process” stated Gabrielle Nastuck, director of Latrobe Art Center.

“The season began with an exhibition of students’ artwork from Penn Trafford Middle school, where 350 students submitted an original piece that was designed in the classrooms of art teachers Jane DeBone and Carla Gialloreto. After the Penn Trafford display, the gallery was transformed into an oceanic oasis with the presentation of the Champion of the Arts Exhibit. With support from the Westmoreland Intermediate Unit and Latrobe Carpenter Steel, Latrobe Art Center welcomed 222 special needs students from 12 school districts to visit the art center and participate in “under the sea” themed art projects. A reception was held Thursday, May 7, with special guest Ted Kopas joining director Gabrielle Nastuck in presenting awards and congratulating the students’ hard work. In addition to the Champion of the Arts Program, Latrobe Art Center also hosts life skills students from Latrobe and Belle Vernon school districts. Known as “the buddies,” the 29 participants come to the art center to work on different projects and learn new art techniques. The program continues until the end of the school year, and Latrobe Art Center enjoys watching the students progress and develop their creative talents.”

Several upcoming shows are planned including the Poems and Painting reception on Tuesday, May 12 with Write Local, a nonprofit that inspires young writers to think creatively and innovate locally. The organization’s founder, Krista Sarraf, says: “Throughout the Poems and Paintings series, students of all ages chose and cozied up to a painting in Latrobe Art Center’s gallery and wrote ten-line poems to accompany the artwork. Sometimes the poems used strong sensory words, sometimes students imagined stories beyond the image, but in all cases, the young writers looked closely and intently at art, and for that they should be proud.” Family, friends, and members of the community are invited to attend the reception which will be held Tuesday, May 12 from 6:00 – 8:00 P.M. for the 80 students from Christ the Divine Teacher School and homeschool instruction. Another art show will be held the students of Prince of Peace school on Tuesday, May 19 from 6:00 – 8:00 P.M.

Latrobe Art Center director, Gabrielle Nastuck, notes “while April and May are perhaps our busiest months teaching children from around the county, seeing the students develop an interest in the arts and express their creativity is what makes these programs rewarding.” With a strong commitment to community engagement, Latrobe Art Center strives to recognize the value of an arts education by encouraging creative, well-rounded individuals.

Latrobe Art Center’s Holds Seventh Annual Auction

Latrobe, PA: A fabulous evening of original art, unique items, and enjoyable company, Latrobe Art Center will be holding its seventh annual auction at Latrobe Country Club on Thursday, September 25. This is the organization’s most important fundraiser with proceeds helping preserve the center’s mission of fostering creativity and improving the quality of life in the area through the arts.

Beginning at 6:00 P.M., guests will have the opportunity to participate in the silent auction while enjoying hors d’oeuvres and a cash bar. Dessert and coffee will mark the end of the silent auction at 7:45, with the live auction beginning at 8:00. Between the silent and live auctions, guests will also be able to bid in the Chinese auction, which will feature exciting items such as a basket of twenty wine bottles, $100 of scratch off tickets, a restaurant gift card package, and beer and nuts. Latrobe Art Center is grateful for the generous donations from wonderful individuals and businesses, including a designer handbag, a Raspberry Acres wine basket from Knupp and Sholfield, a gift basket from Never Enough! Boutique in Greensburg, and artwork from several of the center’s members.

This year’s auction will be unique with guest appearances from Guy Junker, WTAE sports anchor, James Ferry, Duquense University Head Basketball Coach, and B.B. Flenory, a Pennsylvania sports and basketball hall of fame recipient. Flenory’s athletic achievements have inspired him to support youth development, having been recognized as a “Community Champion” by the Pittsburgh Pirate Organization. Pittsburgh artist Sam Thong will also be attending to create his signature caricatures, and art center member Marci Mason will be the guest painter for the evening. In addition to the exciting auction items, the exceptional company will make this event a wonderful evening in the Neighborhood.

Anyone interested in attending the auction is invited to contact the art center to RSVP. Latrobe Art Center actively seeks to unite the local communities through engaging social events, with the auction being one of the organization’s largest and most important of the year. Guest admittance starts at $50 a person, patrons at $75. For more information, call 724-537-7011, visit, or

Holly Jolly Christmas in Latrobe

Downtown merchants in Latrobe are coming together to announce a Holly Jolly Christmas on Saturday, December 6. Local retailers and organizations will be presenting a variety of seasonal offerings including craft vendors, kids activities, holiday open houses, and food specials.

Over twenty-five craft vendors will be set up in Latrobe Art Center and the Quatrini Rafferty building from 9:00 A.M. to 3:00 P.M. selling a collection of unique and original items including paintings, jewelry, pottery, candles, and holiday decorations. Also participating in the craft display will be Christ the Divine Teacher School, where over thirty exhibitors will have Italian products, glass pieces, photography, and more for sale. Christ the Divine will also be having a Chinese Auction for guests to participate in.

Along with craft vendors, Christ the Divine will also be providing a kids activity sponsored by Adams Memorial Library. Beginning at 10:30 A.M., the activity’s theme “Who Will Help Santa this Year?”, is part of a presentation from Stage Right Productions in Greensburg. To register for this activity, call Adams Memorial Library at 724-537-4383.

From 10:00 A.M. to 2:00 P.M., families are encouraged to bring their children to the Medicine Shoppe for a Frozen-themed winter party. Crafts, face painting, photo booths and karaoke are all part of the celebration, with special appearances from Olaf and Elsa! Guests will also be able to register to win a Frozen Goody Box valued over $100.

Several local merchants will be having a holiday open house, including Rose Style Shoppe with exciting promotions of $10 off any purchase of $50 or $20 off of any purchase of $100 in fashions and accessories. Also joining the festivities will be Chicora’s, who will be celebrating their third anniversary with sales, prizes, and food and drink! Knupp and Scholfield will not only be hosting Santa and his helpers all day, but their open house will also have an ugly sweater contest, with the winner receiving ten per cent off their holiday purchase. Live music, refreshments, and a free wine tasting will also be available.

No Holly Jolly celebration would be complete without delicious food offerings, including Neighborhood Café sandwich, soup, and drink specials like a delicious candy cane white chocolate latte or holiday chai nog. Food vendors will also be set up in Christ the Divine, ensuring everyone has a full stomach from a day full of activities and shopping.

Latrobe’s first Holly Jolly Christmas supports local vendors and merchants and is a fun-filled family day. With all of the exciting events and activities, this day will sure to be spread the holiday cheer!

European Influences Come to Latrobe

Latrobe, PA: Beginning Thursday, November 5, Latrobe Art Center will be displaying the works of well-known local artist, Jonelle Summerfield, as the winter season featured exhibitionist. To recognize her talents, guests in the community are invited to Latrobe Art Center for the reception to be held on Friday, November 14 from 7-9 P.M. This will be splendid evening of art, music, food, and drinks.

Having been exposed to art since childhood, Summerfield started to learn how to paint only after graduating from Indiana University of Pennsylvania. She began taking workshops with artists who she admired and worked to turn painting into a full time career. Summerfield joined Latrobe Art Center in 2007 where she sold paintings, and three years later, she worked with her local Arts Council to form an annual Open Studio Tour featuring several local artists. Since 2012, she has dedicated all of her time to art.

When asked what motivates her aesthetics, Summerfield relays: “travel and my internship experience in London are the biggest influence on my style and subject matter.” While there, she visited London’s famous museums, sometimes a few times a week. The classical works there, especially Rembrandt, John Singer Sargent and Vermeer, served as her inspiration. Europe is one of her favorite subjects for paintings, where she concentrates on sidewalk cafes, busy streets, and the interiors of coffee shops, pubs and restaurants. Her main focus is to paint peaceful scenes that remind one of the good things in life. However, no subject is excluded from Jonelle’s portfolio, as she also paints cats, Pennsylvania townscapes and still lifes.

Director Gabrielle Nastuck says: “Latrobe Art Center is thrilled to display Summerfield’s pieces and we would like to invite everyone in the Neighborhood to her reception on Friday, November 14 from 7-9 P.M. Food and drinks will be available, and guests will be able to meet the artist. Summerfield’ European inspired works are both beautiful and captivating.”

The show will be on display until January 9.  For more information, call 724-537-7011, visit, or check out their Facebook Page at:

Latrobe Art League Sponsors Upcoming Art Reception

Latrobe, PA: Latrobe Art Center would like to announce the reception for the Latrobe Art League exhibit to be held Thursday, October 9 from 7-9 P.M. For over sixty years, Latrobe Art League has been dedicated to honing the skills of artists and raising the level of art appreciation in the community through workshops, outreach programs, and art receptions.

Member artists of the center are eligible to participate in this show which features over fifty pieces from a variety of mediums. Mandy Sirofchuck, of The Main Exhibit in Ligonier, will be the judge of the show and will announce the awards including Best in Show during the reception on Thursday.

Everyone in the community is invited to attend this reception on Thursday, October 9 from 7-9 P.M. at Latrobe Art Center and enjoy the artwork. Hosted by Peg Panasiti of the Latrobe Art League, complementary drinks and appetizers will be available. Several of the artists in the show will also be attending, and guests will have the opportunity to talk with them and watch the awards being presented. For more information, call 724-537-7011, visit, or check out their Facebook Page at:

Talented Local Music Duo to Perform at Latrobe Art Center

Latrobe, PA: Next Tuesday, October 7, Latrobe Art Center will be hosting String Tyme, a local bluegrass musical duo, to the gallery for their weekly Open Mic Nights. On “Tunes-day” Tuesday nights, local musicians display their talents for guests in the community who come to appreciate the art of music and the unique flair of each performer.

This upcoming event is particularly exciting with the welcoming of Amy Clarke and Jeff Bell, a musical bluegrass duo whose shows consistently receive overwhelmingly positive responses from the crowds and venues at which they play. When they met, they discovered Amy’s heartfelt vocals and lyrical autoharp playing meshed perfectly with Jeff’s guitar, banjo, and ukelele rhythms. Their recognizable connection carries into their music, where despite their considerations of performing independently, decided their talents and diverse musical backgrounds would be the perfect fit for entertaining any crowd. Ever since they became a duo and formed String Tyme, their well-received performances from a variety of ages and audiences prove their strong relationship serves as an inspiration that can be felt through their satisfying melodies.

As a membership art gallery, Latrobe Art Center brings in local artists to display their works and unite the community in spreading art appreciation. Open Mic Nights at the center are a means to go beyond the visual arts by promoting the performing arts and engaging everyone to explore their creative talents. Everyone in the neighborhood is welcome to attend this event which will begin at 5:00 P.M. on Tuesday, October 7 at the gallery on Ligonier Street, with String Tyme beginning performance at 7:00 P.M. Dinner from the Neighborhood Café will also be available for purchase. Latrobe Art Center encourages everyone to share in the creative process by participating in Open Mic Nights every Tuesday and welcoming String Tyme in their next upcoming performance.

Bringing Fred Home

On Sunday, January 24, 2016, was Latrobe Art Center’s Reveal Party. The evening started off with a Tribute to Mr. Fred Rogers. A Live Performance by John Carosella and David Seremet of The Cabaret Theater.  Following the performance, Miss Gabi announced The Reveal. The Latrobe Art Center and City of Latrobe are partnering to Bring Mr. Fred Rogers Home.

In 2014, Mary Vanden Burk, a home schooled, high school student of Latrobe, applied for the Historical Marker for Fred Rogers. In 2015, the marker was approved. Once approved, the question was asked. . .”What do we do??”  “How do we do it??”

  • The Marker will bear an inscription honoring Mr. Fred Rogers’ legacy and denoting Latrobe as his birthplace.
  • The Marker will be placed in James H. Rogers Memorial Park, in downtown Latrobe. This park was named after Fred’s Father.
  • Fred Rogers will also be memorialized with a life-size bronze statue of him sitting on a bench holding the neighborhood trolley.
  • It has been decided that on Saturday, June 11th, 2016 at 1:43pm the dedication of the Marker and unveiling of the statue will take place.

In addition to the dedication and unveiling of the statue, LAC has created a few smaller events leading up to the major one.

  • A Sweater Party at Rizzo’s on March 19th to remember Fred’s Birthday
  • A Daniel Tiger Tie-Dye T-shirt Party in Rogers Park for the Children on May 14th.
  • A Formal Neighborhood Gala the evening before the dedication on June 10th. A wine, beer and food tasting event with live entertainment that will have you dancing the night away.
  • And finally, Dedication Day will be a Family Fun Day in the Neighborhood with Daniel Tiger himself, Trolley Rides, Puppet Shows, Food, Live Music, Theatre and more.