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Festival Of Trees Exhibit Goes Steampunk

The annual Festival of Trees exhibit and Toys for Tots fundraiser will be held at the Marketplace at Steamtown in the former Abercrombie & Fitch space.

The exhibit will open with a reception and fundraiser on Friday, December 9, beginning at

5:30 pm. The trees will be on display through January 9.

The Lackawanna County Arts and Culture Department is seeking non-profit organizations, businesses, churches and schools to participate in the event by sponsoring and decorating a tree.  Participants must supply their own artificial tree. All funds raised will go directly to Toys for Tots.

In an attempt to celebrate Lackawanna County’s industrial history, the theme for this year is Steamtown Goes Steampunk! Steampunk is a subgenre of science fiction or fantasy that incorporates technology and aesthetic designs inspired by 19th-century industrial, steam-powered machinery which has launched a whole visual style and philosophy. It blends the cutting edge with the past by juxtaposing modern technology with a Victorian aesthetic. Steampunk has roots in the Victorian era and the fantastic works of authors such as Jules Verne, who wrote Around the World in Eighty Days, The Steam House, and 20,000 Leagues Under the Sea; and H.G. Wells, author of The Invisible Man and The Time Machine.

The cost to sponsor a tree is $50 for non-profits, schools and small businesses (50 or under employees) and $100 for corporations (over 50 employees).

To register a tree, send checks or money orders, made payable to Toys for Tots, along with contact information to Gerard Hetman, Festival of Trees, Lackawanna County Community Relations Department, 200 Adams Avenue, Sixth Floor, Scranton, PA 18503.  To request a formal application, call The Arts and Culture Department at 570.963.6590, ext. 106, or email arts-culture@lackawannacounty.org.

Depending on space availability, the registration deadline is slated to close on December 8.  All trees must be set-up by December 9.

County & Scranton Area Community Foundation Explore Link Between Art and Transportation

A program designed to explore how art and culture can help impact and support better area transportation issues will be held on Friday, November 4, from 9 AM – Noon at the Electric City Trolley Museum, 300 Cliff Street, Scranton.

This forum is being jointly presented by the Lackawanna County Arts & Culture Department and the Scranton Area Community Foundation.  This seminar is the fourth installment of a series exploring the impact the arts have on various segments of our society and its operating environment.

The  final session, entitled Art for Social Change: Focus on Transportation, was formulated to examine how art and cultural activities can be interjected to help various challenges within the transportation sector, including improved public transportation, non-motorized options, connecting populations in need with services, and ensuring visitors can navigate the area quickly and easily.   Originally only three forums were planned, but transportation issues and questions arose at the other forums on health, economy and environment so an additional session was organized focusing solely on transportation.

“Transportation is huge issue for this area, and it runs through all facets such as connecting people to services and tourism and creating a healthier environment. Art and the artistic process can be a great catalyst for creative solutions ranging from design, innovative partnerships for projects, and public education,” and explained Maureen McGuigan, the County’s Deputy Director for Arts & Culture.

“Transportation challenges impact many people in our community.  From access to health care, social services, and the arts and culture, it is clearly an issue that deserves increased focus and attention,” explained Laura Ducceschi, Scranton Area Community Foundation President & CEO.

The Foundation and the  Arts & Culture Department decided to organize the roundtable discussions with the intent of bringing together government agencies and foundation leaders along with the business community, nonprofits, educators and civic leaders to foster an understanding of how cultural and creative expression has the means to create deep, lasting and measurable community-wide social change.  The goal of the series was to generate new ideas, bring about new actions, and inspire the participants to create visions for growth.

The roundtable discussions are by invitation only and are limited to the first 40 respondents. 

For more information, please contact Ms. McGuigan at 570.963.6590, ext. 102, or mcguiganm@lackawannacounty.org.