Baltimore Arts & Prosperity Report Released

ARTS & ECONOMIC PROSPERITY IN BALTIMORE CITY REPORT RELEASED

The Baltimore Office of Promotion & The Arts announces that today the Americans for the Arts has officially released the study Arts & Economic Prosperity 5: The Economic Impact of Nonprofit Arts & Cultural Organizations & Their Audiences in the City of Baltimore. The report states that the city’s nonprofit arts and culture sector is a $606 million industry supporting more than 15,000 full-time jobs and generating $54.5 million in local and state revenue. Also, it emphasizes that the arts are an investment that delivers both community well-being and economic vitality.

It’s extremely important to have this data that highlights our creative economy showing the growth of this important sector. Over the past ten years, we have more than doubled in all areas including spending, revenue and jobs.  This is a real indication of the growth of Baltimore’s arts & cultural community,” said Mayor Catherine E. Pugh.

In the past ten years, the nonprofit arts and culture industry expanded from $270 million in spending noted in the 2007 report to more than $606 million indicated in the 2017 report.  In addition, full-time support jobs increased from 6,418 to 15,052, and total local and state revenue grew from $23 million to $54.5 million.

“The cultural industry is extremely important to Baltimore’s economic health and vibrancy by not only providing creative activities and programs but also by providing jobs to residents and local revenue to Baltimore City’s economy,” said Bill Gilmore, Chief Executive Officer of the Baltimore Office of Promotion & The Arts.

The complete report can be downloaded from www.promotionandarts.org or www.artsusa.org/EconomicImpact.

The Arts & Economic Prosperity 5 study was conducted by Americans for the Arts to document the economic impact of the nonprofit arts and culture industry in 341 communities and regions (113 cities, 115 counties, 81 multicity or multicounty regions, 10 states, and 12 individual arts districts)—representing all 50 U.S. states and the District of Columbia. Americans for the Arts partnered with 250 local, regional, and statewide organizations that represent the 341 study regions (30 partners included multiple study regions as part of their participation). To complete this customized analysis for the City of Baltimore, the Baltimore Office of Promotion & the Arts joined the study as one of the 250 partners.

The Baltimore Office of Promotion &The Arts is a 501 (c) (3) non-profit organization which serves as Baltimore City’s arts council, film office, and events agency. By producing large-scale events such as Light City, Artscape and the Baltimore Book Festival, and providing funding and support to artists, arts programs and organizations across the city, BOPA’s goal is to make Baltimore a more vibrant and creative city.

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Winners Announced for 2017 Baltimore Screenwriters Competition

For Immediate Release: May 6, 2017, Baltimore Office of Promotion & The Arts

BALTIMORE SCREENWRITERS COMPETITION WINNERS ANNOUNCED

WINNERS NAMED IN FEATURE & SHORTS CATEGORIES

The Baltimore Film Office, a division of the Baltimore Office of Promotion & The Arts, announces the winners of the 12th annual Baltimore Screenwriters Competition.  In the feature category, the winners are Evan Balkan, Miceal O’Donnell and Starr Harris.  In the shorts category, the winners are Warren Watson, David Ruiz and David Joyner.  Winners receive prizes, including cash and all access passes to the 2017 Maryland Film Festival.  The competition is designed to create awareness of screenplays as a literary art form and to encourage new screenwriters into the entertainment industry.  The 2017 Baltimore Screenwriters Competition is a project of the Baltimore Film Office at the Baltimore Office of Promotion & The Arts, in conjunction with film programs at Johns Hopkins University and Morgan State University.  Funding is provided by Morgan State University, The Arts Insurance Program, a division of Maury, Donnelly and Paur and Johns Hopkins University.  Additional support is courtesy of the Maryland Film Festival, NEXTCAR, Visit Baltimore, The Charles Theatre, the Senator Theatre and Landmark Theatres.

2017 FEATURE WINNERS

First Place: Evan Balkan, “Children of Disobedience” – Ryszard Flintlock is an ex-rock megastar now well past his prime.  Forced to move out of his home, he takes a room in a house with Sonia Farfelli and her son Sammy, who is twenty years Ryszard’s junior and fresh from leaving the seminary after less than one semester. Both men are lost in in need of a real and lasting bond, a relationship that provides depth and comfort. “Children of Disobedience” is the story of how they find it in one another.

Evan L. Balkan’s screenplay Spitfire, adapted from his novel of the same name, won both the 2016 Baltimore Screenwriters Competition and a Saul Zaentz Innovation Fund Fellowship. He is a co-writer for the television series, Wayward Girls, which will be shooting its pilot in fall 2017. He is the author of six books of nonfiction, including The Wrath of God: Lope de Aguirre; Revolutionary of the Americas (Univ. of New Mexico Press) as well as many essays and short stories in an array of publications. His novel Spitfire is forthcoming from Amphorae Publishing.  He coordinates the English Department at the Community College of Baltimore County, where he runs the creative writing program, and is an adjunct faculty member in the Johns Hopkins University’s graduate Teaching Writing program. He holds degrees in the humanities from Towson, George Mason, and Johns Hopkins universities. The latter degree is in creative writing with a fiction concentration and his thesis project, the novel Root That Mountain Down, won an Individual Artist Award for Fiction from the Maryland State Arts Council and was subsequently excerpted in the Baltimore Review. He has served as a guest lecturer at Yale, Johns Hopkins, Bryn Mawr and many other institutions.

Second Place: Miceal O’Donnell, “Little Pig , Little Pig” – Dorothy, a doctor’s wife and mother in the 1950s, struggles between satisfying her responsibilities to her family and her dreams of pursuing life as an actress.  When Dorothy’s fellow drama school alumni gather at a house party late in the summer, they reenact a scene from one of their musicals, and her passions are re-ignited.

Miceal O’Donnell is a graduate of St. Joseph’s University where he received his Bachelor’s degree in Fine Arts. Post-graduation, he was a studio assistant under internationally acclaimed artist Ron Klein, studied fiction writing under Pulitzer Prize winner Stephen Dunn, and was a baker until joining the U.S. Coast Guard in 2000, where he served as a Coxswain, Federal Law Enforcement Agent, performed Search and Rescue missions, and was the unit’s EMT and training Petty Officer. During his time he earned the Coast Guard Achievement Medal. He resided in New Orleans for ten years where he made a number of micro-budget feature and short films, shot a short film in Berlin, Germany, and moved to Baltimore, MD with his wife in 2012. His feature film, “Dante and Minnie,” screened at the Baltimore International Black Film Festival in 2015.  Most recently he released a web series, “Blue Light,” about a 1950s housewife, Mildred, who comes home to find people from the future talking to her through her television set.

Third Place: Starr Harris, “Storms in London, Paris” – “Storms in London, Paris” is the story of a brother and sister whose mother was accidentally killed by the police while trying to defend their father and how that tragedy manifested its effects in their adulthood.

2017 SHORTS WINNERS

First Place: Warren Watson, “Redemption Song” – Two men from vastly different backgrounds try to reconcile their differences in the wake of the 2015 Baltimore riots.

Warren Watson is an actor and production professional with over 25 years in the television and film industry. Warren has acted in feature and short films, national television programs and commercials. On the production side, Warren has been a cameraman for such shows as “Modern Marvels,” “America’s Most Wanted,” “E! True Hollywood Stories” and many others. Warren has also been a Producer for “Bikeweek,” “World Business Review,” Retirement Living Television and numerous corporate productions. “Redemption Song” is his first attempt at screenwriting.

Second Place: David Ruiz, “The Century List” – Norman Riggs, a former soldier who fell on the battlefield during the Spanish-American War, is recruited by “Joseph” in the afterlife to take on the role of Death for 100 years.  Here, he hopes to find redemption and receive another chance at a new life to do things the right way.

As the first American born to an Argentine family, American cinema made a huge impression on David from an early age. From studying Theatre in high school and working at Blockbuster (yes, back when they were plentiful), David fully immersed himself in film.

In addition, David is a writer of memoirs. He created his own website, The Moron Editorial, in 2008. He self-published his first e-book in 2013, entitled The Moron Editorial: Volume 1, with the follow-up set to release in summer 2017. David is honored to participate in the Baltimore Screenwriters Competition for the first time.

Third Place: David Joyner, “K1ng_Pe5t” – When teenage sisters skip Christmas with Grandma to play video games, their world turns inside out.  They use cheat codes to access new game features, but the characters in the video game have their own cheat codes.

David is a mathematics professor at a local college who has been writing technical books and articles for over 30 years. His short “Quantum Insurance” won the 2015 Baltimore Screenwriters’ Competition in the short category. His (self-produced) narrative film projects include “Beyond the Door” (a short based on a story by P.K. Dick), “Quantum Insurance” (short based on the BSC award-winning script), and the web series “Tam’s World” (based on an original script, using characters from Quantum Insurance). His non-fiction article “The man who found God’s number” won a 2015 Polya Award from the Mathematical Association of America. He and his wife Elva live just outside Annapolis, Maryland.

In the feature category, the first place winner receives $1,500, an all access pass to the 2017 Maryland Film Festival, a Weekend in Baltimore Package, a rental car for the weekend and passes to area movie theaters.  The second place winner receives $750, an all access pass to the festival and movie passes.  The third place winner receives $350, an all access pass to the festival and movie passes.  In the shorts category, winners will receive cash prizes.

All scripts were judged by film and television industry professionals.  The 2017 judges are writer Norman Steinberg (“Blazing Saddles,” “My Favorite Year”), producer Nina Noble (“The Deuce,” “Treme,” “The Wire”), producer Grant Curtis (“Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles 2,” “Spiderman,”) and producer and studio executive Larry Kostroff.

For more information on the Baltimore Screenwriters Competition, visit www.baltimorefilm.com or call 410-752-8632. For more information on the Baltimore Office of Promotion and The Arts, visit www.promotionandarts.org.

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Baltimore Farmers’ Market & Bazaar Returns April 23, 2017

The Baltimore Farmers’ Market & Bazaar Returns for 40th Season on April 23, 2017 with New “First Sundays” Events

For immediate release: March 21, 2017

The Baltimore Office of Promotion & The Arts announces that the Baltimore Farmers’ Market & Bazaar returns for its 40th season on Sundays, April 23 through December 17, 2017. In honor of its 40th anniversary, the Baltimore Farmers’ Market & Bazaar will host a special event on the first Sunday of every month known as “First Sundays.” From April until the Market closes in December, market-goers can celebrate the first Sunday of the month with special guests, performances, cooking classes and giveaways. The Baltimore Farmers’ Market & Bazaar is open from 7am until noon and located on Saratoga Street between Holliday and Gay streets, underneath the Jones Falls Expressway (JFX).

Also taking place on the first Sunday of every month are Chef Egg Live: Farmers’ Market Family Classes from 9am to 10:30am. Chef Egg will lead a group on a tour of the Market to talk to the farmers about what’s in season, bringing back a basket of fresh produce and a protein to the demo area. This will commence with a hands-on cooking class supported by Mission Thrive Summer graduates and students. Classes are $10 per person. Interested participants can register at www.chefegg.com.

New farmers and food vendors for 2017 include: Baccarella, Hensing’s Hilltop Acres, Old Line Fish Company with The Oyster Recovery Project, Rastafarmi, Urban Pastoral, Azafran, The Baltimore Whiskey Company, La Bohemia Bakery, Cake Cre8tions by Carol, Ekiben and Greek On The Street. For complete list of farmers and vendors, visit www.promotionandarts.org

The Baltimore Farmers’ Market & Bazaar’s April kick-off event and “First Sundays” are listed below:

April 23        BBQ for SNAP Too!

On opening day, the 40th season of the Baltimore Farmers’ Market & Bazaar kicks off with live music and “BBQ for SNAP Too!”, a barbeque competition featuring local chefs and barbeque vendors competing in five different categories for the title of “Baltimore Farmers’ Market & Bazaar BBQ Master.” Registration fees for each category directly benefit the Maryland Farmers’ Market Association’s Maryland Market Money Program. Local vendors interested in participating in the competition can apply online via www.promotionandarts.org. The judging takes place from 9am to 10am and the competing vendors will be selling their barbeque from 10am to 12pm.

May 7             Bike to the Market

Calling all cyclists! Pedal down to the Baltimore Farmers’ Market & Bazaar as we celebrate National Bike Month. Featuring a raffle, advocacy groups, local shops and more.

June 4           Nurse Appreciation Day

Every day nurses should be appreciated and celebrated. Nurses can stop by the Baltimore Farmers’ Market & Bazaar Welcome Tent with their ID Badge to collect a free market tote bag.

July 2             Independence Celebration

Join the Baltimore Farmers’ Market & Bazaar family in celebrating our nation’s independence with a patriotic guest performance and giveaways.

Aug 6             Time to Read

Enjoy quality time at the  Baltimore Farmers’ Market & Bazaar with story time, readings by special guests, and a visit from a local bookmobile.

Sept 3            Back To School Brown Bag

Learn quick and tasty lunch time recipes using Baltimore Farmers’ Market & Bazaar ingredients that will satisfy everyone, even our smallest market-goers.

Oct 1              Fall Harvest

Visit the market as we highlight and celebrate the bounties of autumn. Featuring an apple pie contest, scarecrows, pumpkins and more.

Nov 5             Seafood by the Harbor

Baltimore is, after all, home of the BEST seafood! Join us for an oyster shucking demonstration, and spotlights on sustainable local seafood.

Dec 3              Holiday Art Expo

Just in time for the holidays, visit the Baltimore Farmers’ Market & Bazaar for all of your gifting needs. We’ll be bringing in an abundance of local crafters, artists, and artisans.

Market-goers can stay in touch with the Market and participating vendors all year long on Facebook at www.facebook.com/BmoreFarmersMarket and Twitter at www.twitter.com/bmorefarmersmkt using the hashtag #bmorefarmersmkt. The Baltimore Farmers’ Market & Bazaar is presented by Mayor Catherine E. Pugh and managed by the Baltimore Office of Promotion & The Arts.

For more information on the Baltimore Farmers’ Market & Bazaar, call 410-752-8632 or visit www.promotionandarts.org.

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