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Thank you to the Wexner Center's ushers, docents, and all other volunteers for so generously sharing your time and talents with us. You help make our performances, films, exhibitions, and special events even more enjoyable for our audiences.
The stories below share a little bit about the experiences of volunteers at the Wexner Center. Read more stories or tell your own on the Wexblog.
Annual Usher Party 2009
Congratulations to "Usher of the Year" Loribeth Kowalski, who was honored at the annual usher celebration in May 2009. See the pictures in the Wexner Center's Flickr albums.
Volunteers On and Off Stage 2008
Read about volunteers' experiences here in a series of blog posts in honor of National Volunteer Day 2008.
The following volunteers got into the action on stage, appearing in two 2008 Wexner Center performances. Nature Theater of Oklahoma’s Poetics: a ballet brut in February 2008: Matt Barnes, Mindy Bowers, Audra Brandt, Amy Dalrymple, Erin Davis, Sarah Drake, Sarah Dryer, Bob Eckhart, Alexandra Gallo, Kaitlyn Geiger, Melanie Gnosa, Elizabethan Francis Gupta, Dave Hetzler, HGF, Kevin Howard, Beth Josephson, Nancy Kangas, Pat Larson, Elissa Marcus, Latosha Matthews, Amanda McNutt, Yekaterina Melomed, Susann Moeller, Lori E. Myers, Suzanne Myers, Robert Paschen, Casey Velker, Mark Webster, Samantha Werner, Loretta Zedella, Mark Zedella, and Sina Fastabend. Socìetas Raffaello Sanzio’s Hey Girl! in January 2008: Richard Ades, Ryan Agnew, Leni Anderson, Matt Barnes, Samuel Beavers, Chris Castillo, Steve Cohen, Patrick Copeland, Dave Covey, Jack Davis, Kevin Davison, Peter Dully, Bob Eckhart, Le Gao, Adrian Gorzitze, Kevin Howard, Bora “Max” Koknar, Stephen J. Kolb, Martin Kellogg, Alex Lefeld, Bill Long, Brian Murphy, Robert Paschen, Robert Pham, Ian Pugh, Darien Robinson, Darren Robinson, Frank Rodriguez, Galen Roth, Devin Shin, Rich Stadler, Michael Trask, and Alan Woods. Sincere thanks to all for participating in these events.
National Docent Symposium 2007 by Jean Mervis
Invigorating, inspiring, educational…these are just some of the words I could use to describe the National Docent Symposium, which I was privileged to attend in beautiful Phoenix, Arizona. About 500 docents from all over the country arrived in Phoenix for the three day event in April. The conference included speakers, panel presentations, round table discussions, and trips to museums throughout the area—all organized by volunteer docents.
The experience was great. I was surprised hearing the similar issues and concerns that we all face. Whether participating at a round table discussion on challenging issues or listening to a speaker suggest that the most engaging tour is one that spontaneously customizes itself to the needs of its visitors, the conference was a great time to reflect on what we do at the Wexner Center. It also reminded me of things we sometimes forget to do as we conduct our tours and greet our visitors. I also have to say that I have even more appreciation for our knowledgeable and enthusiastic education and curatorial staff—all Wexner Center staff—who never fail to teach and inspire us with each new exhibition. Not all volunteers are as fortunate.
I give my thanks to the Wexner Center education staff for making it possible for me to attend this inspirational symposium. I’m very proud to be a docent at the Wexner Center for the Arts.
A Volunteer's Story 2006 by Dolores Blankenship
I retired as a Columbus Middle School Principal on July 1, 1994, after 40 years in education as a classroom music teacher and administrator. I wanted to remain active--participating, contributing, involved, and serving others--to support the arts, and to be a lifelong learner.
I immediately contacted the Wexner Center and, by September 1994, was busy as a docent and as a volunteer usher. I have continued these activities to the present, including leading tours of the reopening exhibition, Part Object Part Sculpture, and ushering at various performing arts events.
I find these activities rewarding: I can experience the cutting edge in all these areas without monetary investment--just the investment of my time. I am encouraged to experience, to expand my horizons. As docents, we have access to wonderful materials and lectures, and I can interact with others in a teaching role I enjoy. As an usher, I see former students and teaching colleagues, as well as new friends and fellow volunteers, and I never go alone to the theater. There are other perks, like usher honoraria, an annual party, and discounts on tickets and on merchandise at the Wexner Center Store.
A nice feeling of respect and appreciation from the Wexner Center's staff is evident, and, really, it's more than is given in volunteer activities at some other venues. A "thank you" is often expressed at the end of an activity.
To sum it up, my needs to stay active and support the arts are being met in an enjoyable manner. I appreciate the opportunity to be associated with a world-class institution such as the Wexner Center for the Arts!
CONTACTS FOR VOLUNTEERS
Patron Services Coordinator
Tel: (614) 292-6310
Usher line: (614) 247-8487
Education Program Volunteers
Tel: (614) 292-6493
Educator for Docent and Teacher Programs
Tel: (614) 292-6982