Monthly Archives: January 2017

Blind Spot: A Matter of Perception

The Massillon Museum’s Blind Spot: A Matter of Perception exhibition will be a compilation of more than a dozen components with the hope of reaching persons with low vision and blindness as well as sighted patrons.

The free public exhibition opening will be held Saturday, February 18, 2017, from 3:00 to 5:00 p.m. The event will include refreshments inspired by paintings in the exhibition and a performance of specially commissioned music at 4:00 p.m.  Persons with blindness and low vision and their guests will be welcomed at 1:30 p.m.  The Massillon Museum members’ preview will begin at 2:00 p.m. No reservations will be necessary.  The exhibition will continue through May 23, 2017.

Blind Spot is based on ten abstract paintings from the Massillon Museum’s permanent collection.  Each painting will be accompanied by a small-scale, three-dimensional aluminum model and a braille label, which all visitors will be invited to touch.  Large-print labels will also be displayed.

Ten abstract paintings from the Massillon Museum permanent collection

Artists include Richard Andres, David Appleman, Julius Faysash, Clare Ferriter, Richard Florsheim, Sherri Hornbrook, Leo Thomas Kissell, Walter Quirt, and Theodoros Stamos (represented by two paintings).

Large-print labels

High-contrast, large-print labels affixed to the wall at appropriate heights throughout the exhibition will help visitors with low vision enjoy the paintings.

Braille labels

Clovernook Center for the Blind and Visually Impaired in Cincinnati, Ohio, will produce exhibition labels in braille.

Tactile gallery maps

Gallery maps with raised information, also provided by Clovernook Center, will help guests with low vision and blindness navigate through the exhibition independently.

An aluminum tactile model of each painting

Canton artist David McDowell has created a three-dimensional aluminum tactile model of each artwork.  Visitors will be able to feel the shapes in the paintings.

An iPad touchscreen soundscape app for each painting

Classic Interactions has created an app for each painting with audible descriptions of the artwork, and sounds inspired by the painting.  These sounds were developed with help from Barry Stirbens and Jan Stirbens, both of whom have congenital blindness.  The Philomatheon Society of the Blind provided tactile stickers to adhere to the iPads to help patrons with blindness locate the audible home screen buttons.

Tactile response artworks created by students 

Students at the Clovernook Center for the Blind and Visually Impaired in Cincinnati, Ohio, will create ceramic sculptures based on their responses to soundscapes described by co-curators Barry Stirbens and Jan Stirbens, and developed into apps by Classic Interactions to audibly describe the visual paintings.

Accessible exhibition design

Carpet donated by Fred’s Carpets in Canton will help patrons who use canes to locate interactive stations.

Low-vision simulator goggles 

Sighted patrons may borrow goggles that replicate central scotomas (blind spots) so they can experience the exhibition from the perspective of a person with age-related macular degeneration (AMD)—the leading cause of low vision in the developed world.


Accessible tours of the entire Museum are available upon request.  Advance reservations are required.

Braille workshop

Erin Byrne will offer a four-session “Fundamentals of Reading Braille” workshop on Saturdays, April 22 and 29, May 6 and 13, 3:00 to 4:00 p.m. Sponsored by the Philomatheon Society of the Blind, the workshop is free, but pre-registration is required.

Performance of music commissioned for the exhibition opening

At the exhibition opening—Saturday, February 18, 3:00 to 5:00 p.m.—a Canton Symphony Orchestra quartet will perform three compositions inspired by three paintings in the exhibition. Students in the Cleveland Institute of Music’s Composer Fellowship composed the pieces.

“Do the Mu”

David McDowell, who created the tactile models for the exhibition, will lead the free monthly “Do the Mu” workshop on Saturday, March 4, 12:00 to 2:00 p.m. Participants in the intergenerational drop-in workshop will create tactile sculptures based on MassMu’s abstract painting collection.

Brown Bag Lunch

The free monthly event will feature a panel discussion with Blind Spot developers—curator Heather Haden, co-curator Barry Stirbens, and artist David McDowell—on Tuesday, May 23, 12:10 to 12:50 p.m.

Photography Workshop

Mark Andres, son of Richard Andres, whose painting Carnival IV is in the exhibition, will lead a photography workshop for persons of all vision levels on Saturday, May 20.  Andres founded Seeing with Photography Collective, a collective of photographers who are blind or have low vision that has exhibited work around the world.

Performance of original music composed for Blind Spot

The Canton Symphony Orchestra will perform music by Alex Cooke, Joseph Tolonen, and Qingye Wu, students in the Cleveland Institute of Arts Composer Fellowship.  The compositions were inspired by paintings in the Blind Spot exhibition.

The Massillon Museum and museums internationally have begun designing exhibitions more universally to advocate for enhanced arts access, especially following the 25th anniversary of the Americans with Disabilities Act in 2015.  Blind Spot is a concerted effort by the Massillon Museum to address access for as many audiences as possible.


The concept of this exhibition has been germinating in Massillon Museum Curator Heather Haden’s mind for a number of years.  “In 2011, in advance of starting a curatorial internship at the Massillon Museum, I attended the Faces of Rural America exhibition,” said Museum Curator Heather Haden.  “Our current director, then-curator, Alexandra Nicholis Coon, had commissioned four local artists to each translate a photograph into a tactile model with braille.  At the time I encountered Faces of Rural America, I was reading, for leisure, Vladimir Nabokov’s Laughter in the Dark, a work of fiction about an art critic who goes blind in a terrible car accident.  Simultaneously, I was a masters student of art history at Kent State focusing on the history of abstract painting and I thought to myself, if I were to lose my sight, how could I possibly enjoy abstract art?”


Haden received a grant through the Ohio Arts Council to attend the Leadership Exchange in Arts and Disability conference in Pittsburgh in August 2016 to support exhibition development.


Blind Spot sponsors include Clovernook Center for the Blind and Visually Impaired, the Philomatheon Society of the Blind, and Fred’s Carpets. Western Reserve Public Media is the media sponsor. The Massillon Museum receives operating support from the Ohio Arts Council and ArtsinStark.  Yund’s Carwash and Detail, Bates Printing, MCTV, Cyrus Custom Framing, The Dell Group, Farmers National Bank, Bonnie’s Engravers Gallery and Signs, Massillon Development Foundation, and the Massillon WestStark Chamber of Commerce helped provide exhibition support through corporate membership.


The Massillon Museum is located at 121 Lincoln Way East in downtown Massillon.  Free parking is available on adjacent streets and in nearby city lots.  The Museum is open Tuesday through Saturday 9:30 to 5:00 p.m. and Sunday 2:00 to 5:00 p.m.  For more information, call 330-833-4061 or visit


Canton First Friday Goes Red

Show us your red! First Friday will GO RED on February 3 to raise awareness for the American Heart Association. Wear red and receive special deals and discounts throughout the Canton Arts District all night long!

Discover your creative side at the Canton Museum of Art by designing heart shaped valen¬tines, posing in the Go Red photo booth, or sitting for a local caricature artist. Everyone wearing red will receive a free raffle ticket. Admission and activities are free and a cash bar is available.

Wear red and get 20% off all First Friday merchandise at Avenue Arts Marketplace & Theatre.

The Hub Art Factory will unveil a new mural next door in The Hub’s newest addition–a video gaming arena! Also, make sure to stop by the showroom to make your own custom Valentine’s Day cards.

Dust offers a make-and-take wooden heart craft for $10 with proceeds going to American Heart Association.

First Friday means FREE Family Movie at the Canton Palace Theatre. Snuggle up with the family for “Hoodwinked” at 7:30pm. Doors open at 6:30pm, and seating is first come, first served.

The Courthouse Plaza Ice Rink hosts open skating until 10pm. Skate rental is $3.

Grapes in a Glass has sweet deals on food and drinks to coincide with the Go Red Theme! Try the Cranberry Cosmo!

Take a stroll through the galleries and studios to see the latest exhibits: Lynda Tuttle’s Art Center features Boho Jewelry Exhibit by lo¬cal artist Nina Gordon Crain. In observance of the American Heart As¬sociation’s “Go Red” Day, wear red and you’ll receive a 10% discount off your BOHO Jewelry purchase PLUS the art center will donate 5% to the American Heart Association. Daniel Beule will be at the Canton Brewing Company Speakeasy with his Photography and original pop art paintings.

Buy art, get cash! Buy $20 or more from your favorite downtown art studio or gallery, bring your receipt to the ArtsinStark Information Center inside Avenue Arts, and get $5 cash back instantly! Each $20 arts receipt gets you $5 cash until 9:45pm.

The Canton Arts District is full of awesome shops, unique finds, and special First Friday deals! Nostalgic memories and Canton-themed art will warm your heart at Cantonology, where you can save 10% on all heart-shaped items! Spice things up with 10% off all Sensual Line products at Only the Essentials Apothecary. Take 10% off all red vintage clothing and accessories at Colette’s Vintage. Pick up salty and sweet Valentine’s Day cards and gifts for him and her at Print & Press Shop & Studios.

First Friday will be rockin’ all night with live music throughout the entire arts district! Hey Monea takes the stage at Buzzbin at 8pm; Brian Henke plays Avenue Arts Marketplace 6-8pm; Gary Parker at Carpe Diem 6-8pm, Doug “Ivory” Domineck at Napoli’s; Robert Esterle Duo at Joseph Saxton 7-9pm; Grapes in a Glass hosts Rachel Randolph 6:30-8:30pm, followed by Mark Loy 9pm-12am.

Join the party and make Canton First Friday part of your weekend on February 3 in the Canton Arts District from 6-10 p.m. Download the map, plus additional details you may need at First Friday is brought to you by the Downtown Special Improvement District, Kempthorn Motors, and of course, ArtsinStark.

Avenue Arts to offer Valentines Princess Workshops

Join Princesses from Snow Sisters Entertainment to craft a special Valentines Box at Avenue Arts Marketplace and Theatre! All supplies to create your box will be provided. Bring your cameras to capture all the fun! Workshop will last till 2:30pm and then all princesses are welcome to head across the street to Cultured Coffee for a special princess waffle or princess hot chocolate. $25 per child for the 90 min workshop, 12 kids MAX per workshop. Each child must be registered to attend.

February 4th’s princesses are Anna and Elsa. February 11th’s princesses are Belle and Cinderella. Tickets to the event can be purchased at

Massillon Museum to Offer Couples’ Clay Workshop for Valentine’s Day

Share some creative fun with someone you love! The Massillon Museum will offer a one-day clay workshop for adults on Sunday, February 12, from 2:30 to 4:30 p.m. All levels of ceramics skill are welcome. Space is limited.
Instructor Kaitlyn Gutshall, a graduate of the Cleveland Institute of Art, will lead the session. Currently, as a graduate student at Kent State University, she is working toward a master’s degree with concentration in museum studies.
The class fee—$35 per couple ($30 for Museum members)—includes instruction and materials. Massillon Museum classes are open to the public. Pre-registration is required for this class by February 6. Students may register by phone, by mail, or in person using cash (exact change), checks, or credit cards. For a detailed class schedule, call the Massillon Museum at 330-833-4061 or visit
The Massillon Museum is located at 121 Lincoln Way East (Ohio Route 172) in downtown Massillon. Free parking is available on adjacent streets and in the nearby city lots and parking deck.

CSO Starts the BEAT — A New Group for Young Patrons

There are great things coming out of the Canton Symphony Orchestra for young patrons.  This year the CSO started a new group for YPs called the BEAT.  The BEAT is a dynamic group of young patrons with a passion for the arts and a desire to make new connections.  Members receive exclusive invitations to social events, discounted concert tickets, and special backstage experiences with CSO musicians. Wendy Merkert, BEAT organizer, says, “The BEAT provides a fun, social space for young professionals in Stark County to make friends, connect with business leaders, and enhance their careers.”  She also loves that “…members get exclusive access to meet-and-greets, pre- and post-parties, and free food and drinks!”
Membership benefits with the $40 annual fee include:

  • Access to exclusive social networking events
  • 25% discount off ALL CSO concert tickets for members
  • One-time 25% concert ticket discount for a friend
  • Admission to Club Z hospitality lounge for all MasterWorks concerts

BEAT members can look forward to two special events in the coming months.  On February 11, The Speedbumps return for another exciting performance with the CSO!  BEAT members get 25% off the ticket price PLUS FREE admission to the After Party at the Canton Brewing Company’s Speakeasy.  The After Party includes complimentary pizza and snacks, cash bar, a chance to win some prizes, and a meet and greet with the band!
On March 23, BEAT members get a peek behind the curtain with special access to an orchestra rehearsal of “Beethoven & His Contemporaries,” which will be performed on Saturday, March 25, 2017. There will be a pre-rehearsal mixer with ystark!, Leadership Stark County, and more young professional organizations.  Members will also be joined by CSO musicians and Associate Conductor Dr. Rachel Waddell (A winner of ystark!’s “20 under 40”.)

For more information on becoming a BEAT member, visit or by calling the Canton Symphony Orchestra box office at 330-452-2094.

Canton Palace Theatre and Announce 2017 Canton Film Fest Submission Categories, in association with the Canton Palace Theatre and the Herbert W. Hoover Foundation, will host the 2017 Canton Film Festival in downtown Canton, Ohio on April 27, 28 and 29, 2017. During this three-day film event, the public will get the chance to screen the submitted short films of independent directors from Canton, Stark County, North East Ohio and all across the country.   As well as be able to hear from industry leaders in cinematography, directing and acting.  The final 2017 schedule will be released in early March 2017.

2017 Canton Film Fest categories include: Documentary, Horror, Action/Sci-Fi/Fantasy, Fictional Film and Music Video.  All submissions should be no more than 15 minutes each.  The early deadline to submit films is Wednesday, March 1, 2017 with a discounted submission fee of $25.00 per entry. Final Deadline is March 31, 2017 with a submission fee of $30.00 per entry.

Submissions can be made by logging onto or by mail to:

Canton Palace Theatre

c/o 2017 Canton Film Fest

605 Market Avenue, N

Canton, Ohio 44702

The Canton Film Fest is a chance for up-and-coming filmmakers to showcase their work. After the entries of each category are screened, there will be an awards ceremony honoring the top-rated films in that respective category, as determined by a panel of judges. Winners will receive prizes for their submissions. Directors who wish to enter their work should visit for submission guidelines.

New for 2017 is the collaboration between and Reelate.  Reelate is movies made for Stark County by Stark County about Stark County. In 2007, three Stark County, Ohio residents – Andrew Rudd, Jay Oldaker & Scott Meier decided to develop the dream of Reelate.  The three of them procured a grant from Arts in Stark, and with the support of Malone University, mentored 5 storytellers to create microdocs that formed the basis of the Reelate project.  Since 2007, Reelate has added over 20 stories made by 14 different filmmakers with ties to Stark County, Ohio. Reelate has partnered with Coming Together Stark County, the Canton Film Fest, and the Stark County District Library to create a prize for stories about individuals who add color to Stark County, called Stark Color Picture Prize.  Films submitted to the 2017 Canton Film Fest will win prizes and their stories will be archived on and at the Stark County District Library. For more information on this project please visit  .

About, now in its fifth year, is dedicated to cultivating the talent within North East Ohio’s filmmaking and creative community. Through co-presenting events such as the 2017 Canton Film Fest as well as through education, strives to put North East Ohio on the independent filmmaking map.

About the Canton Palace Theatre

Completed in 1926, the Canton Palace Theatre is a downtown architectural jewel registered on the National Historic Registry. A prized community venue for classic, contemporary and art films, The Palace annually hosts more than 300 special events, concerts, recitals and Broadway-style productions. For more information, please visit

The Palace is located at 605 Market Avenue North in Canton, Ohio. Business and box office hours are Monday through Friday 10:00a.m. to 4:00 p.m. Business offices can be reached at (330) 454-8172 and a 24-Hour Recorded Event Information line is (330) 454-8171.


 Massillon Museum to Offer Kids’ Acrylic Painting Workshop 


Children in grades one through five can learn how to paint a winter scene step-by-step in the Massillon Museum’s Kids’ Acrylic Painting workshop. The one-day session will meet on Saturday, January 28, from 10:00 to 11:30 a.m.

The class fee, $18 ($15 per Museum member), includes instruction and supplies. Massillon Museum classes are open to the public. Pre-registration is required for this class by January 23. Students may register by phone, by mail, or in person using cash (exact change), checks, or credit cards. The Massillon Museum, as a Blue Star Museum, offers a 10% discount on classes for active military personnel and their families. For a detailed class schedule, call the Massillon Museum at 330-833-4061 or visit

Gibson is an artist and art teacher whose artistic inspiration comes mainly from nature. Although she works primarily with acrylic paints and pencil, she also creates jewelry using hardware, and has worked with a variety of media including charcoal, pastels, mixed media, and wood. She is a licensed visual arts teacher, with a Bachelor of Arts degree from Ashland College and a Master of Education in Integrated Arts degree from the University of Rio Grande. A member of the Ohio Art Education Association, she teaches private lessons and workshops at the Massillon Museum, Pat Catan’s, and Massillon Public Library, and she works as an activities assistant at the Canton Christian Home.

The Massillon Museum is located at 121 Lincoln Way East (Ohio Route 172) in downtown Massillon.  Free parking is available on adjacent streets and in the nearby city lots and parking deck.


Bluecoats to Hong Kong Next Week

In just a few days, the Bluecoats Drum and Bugle Corps are traveling across the world to perform in the 2017 Cathay Pacific International Chinese New Year Night Parade!

The Year of the Rooster takes flight with Chinese New Year on January 28, 2017, and Hong Kong is set to commemorate the event in grand style with an epic celebration. The Hong Kong Tourism Board (HKTB) announced its selection of the National Football League’s (NFL) Los Angeles Rams Cheerleaders and the 2016 Drum Corps International World Champion Bluecoats Drum & Bugle Corps (from Northeast Ohio) to represent the U.S. in the Hong Kong revelry.

The merriment will be headlined by the award-winning Cathay Pacific International Chinese New Year Night Parade in Kowloon, bringing an extravagant procession of decorated floats and international performers including the Los Angeles Rams Cheerleaders and Bluecoats Drum & Bugle Corps to the Tsim Sha Tsui waterfront. Celebrating its 22nd year with the theme “Best Fortune.World Party,” the Night Parade will begin with a fun-filled, interactive street party for guests to enjoy as part of the celebration.

The festivities continue the following day as Hong Kong’s annual Chinese New Year fireworks display engulfs the breathtaking skyline of Victoria Harbour the evening of January 29, 2017.

“Visitors from around the world will descend upon Asia’s World City for its renowned Lunar New Year celebrations, witnessing the one-of-a-kind display of rich traditions that only Hong Kong can offer,” said Bill Flora, U.S. Director of the Hong Kong Tourism Board. “The U.S. is honored to be represented by the exceptional combination of the Los Angeles Rams Cheerleaders and the World Champion Bluecoats Drum & Bugle Corps.”

Following their recently completed inaugural NFL season after returning to Los Angeles, this marks the second Hong Kong visit for the Rams Cheerleaders. While in Hong Kong, the team will premiere an all-new high octane performance exclusively for the Chinese New Year Parade viewers and attendees.

”We are honored to be invited by the Hong Kong Tourism Board to represent our country in this celebration of the Chinese New Year,” said Rams Director of Special Events and Cheerleaders Keely Fimbres-Bledsoe. “Coming on the heels of our first season back home in Los Angeles, we are excited to bring the Rams organization over to Hong Kong and be a part of these special festivities.”

Fresh off their first Drum Corps International World Championship, the Bluecoats Drum and Bugle Corps will be sending a team of 30 people to Hong Kong. The ensemble will perform music based on their championship show “Down Side Up,” in addition to a choreographed drumline battle with local Hong Kong drumline The Pegasus Vanguard.

“We are truly honored to have been selected to participate in the 2017 Chinese New Year night parade and festivities in Hong Kong,” said David Glasgow, Executive Director of the Bluecoats. “This provides a once in a lifetime opportunity for our performers to represent Canton, Ohio and the United States at a major international event in an amazing city.”

To learn more about Hong Kong’s 2017 Chinese New Year Celebration and obtain a complete schedule of events, visit the official Hong Kong Tourism Board website Follow the performers’ Hong Kong journey on social media using the hashtags #RamsCheerinHK and #Bloo17inHK.

About The Los Angeles Rams:

Los Angeles’ original professional sports team – stand as one of the oldest franchises in the National Football League and since its founding in 1937, have garnered three World Championships and sent 29 of its members to the Pro Football Hall of Fame. The Rams are committed to being a valuable civic partner and serving the greater Los Angeles area 365 days a year. As ambassadors of the organization, the Rams Cheerleaders not only perform at home games, but also participate in community events and help further the organization’s efforts both nationally and internationally.

About Bluecoats Drum & Bugle Corps:

The Bluecoats were founded in 1972, as an outgrowth of the Canton Police Boys Club. Regarded as one of the world’s finest outdoor pageantry organizations, the Bluecoats combine the demanding athleticism of extreme sports with an electrifying musical program and stunning visual choreography to thrill audiences throughout the U.S. The Bluecoats have been a DCI World Finalist (top 12 in North America) since 1987. This past winter, almost 1,000 young people from all around the world auditioned at tryout camps for the 150 available performing membership positions. The Bluecoats tour averages over 12,000 miles each summer, with the corps performing at more than 30 events and competitions, often traveling over 300 miles in a single night. To learn more about the Bluecoats and for the latest news and updates, visit

Canton Ballet’s Snow White Will Return in March

Canton Ballet will present its full length production of Snow White in two matinee performances March 18-19 at Canton’s Palace Theatre.  Performance times are 2:00 pm.  Snow White is sponsored by William and Sharon Luntz.

Premiered by the ballet’s choreographer in residence Angelo Lemmo in 2013, Snow White is a children’s narrative full length classical ballet in two acts which loosely follows the brothers Grimm fairy tale and promises to appeal to every member of the family.

Admission is $21-25 for adults and $15-17 for children.  There is a discount for groups of 20 or more.  All seating is reserved.

Tickets may be purchased online at and in person or by telephone at 330-455-7220.  Canton Ballet studios and offices are located in the west wing of the Cultural Center for the Arts, 1001 Market Avenue North in Canton.  Use the Cleveland Avenue entrance.  Office hours are 10 a.m. to 6:00 p.m. Monday through Thursday and 9:00 a.m. to 1:00 p.m. on Saturday.  The office is closed on Fridays and Sundays.

The beautifully restored historic Palace Theatre is located at 605 Market Avenue North in the downtown Canton Arts District.  There is a wheelchair seating area on the main floor.  The theatre box office opens one hour before performance times for advance purchase pickups and walkup sales only.

Under the artistic and executive direction of Cassandra Crowley, Canton Ballet is funded in part by ArtsinStark, Ohio Arts Council and the National Endowment for the Arts with support by The Canton Repository, WHBC, My 101.7, Q92, Western Reserve Public Media and Yamaha.

For additional information visit or call the ballet office at 330-455-7220.

Massillon Museum to Host Mia Meow’s Art Adventures

Children in pre-kindergarten and kindergarten (accompanied by an adult) are invited to attend Mia Meow’s Art Adventures with artist BZTAT at the Massillon Museum. Participants will follow Mia Meow’s adventures as she tells stories and explores her world through art activities. Visit to learn more about the artist and her artwork.
The three-session class will meet on Sundays, February 5, 12, and 19, from 2:30 to 3:15 p.m.
The class fee—$25 ($20 per Museum member)—includes materials. Massillon Museum classes are open to the public. Pre-registration is required for this class by January 30. Students may register by phone, by mail, or in person using cash (exact change), checks, or credit cards. The Massillon Museum, as a Blue Star Museum, offers a 10% discount on classes for active military personnel and their families. For a detailed class schedule, call the Massillon Museum at 330-833-4061 or visit
Mia Meow is a colorful cat character created by animal artist BZTAT (Vicki Boatright). The character is based on a real cat named Mia Meow who lives with four other cats in the artist’s home and studio. Rescued as a kitten from a feral colony, Mia has brought much fun and mischief to the artist’s world. The artist was inspired to create the Mia Meow character as a way to bring arts integration activities to children by encouraging storytelling and creative experiences.
BZTAT specializes in boldly colorful customized pet portraits—unique and contemporary whimsical drawings, paintings, and prints of cats, dogs, and other companion animals.
The Massillon Museum is located at 121 Lincoln Way East (Ohio Route 172) in downtown Massillon.  Free parking is available on adjacent streets and in the nearby city lots.