The Laura Jane Musser Fund has awarded a $12,000 grant to the Great River Arts Association's summer PEAK program for Little Falls area young people, according to a GRAA news release.
PEAK -- Prevention and Education Through the Arts for Kids -- will offer hands-on arts instruction that in some cases will focus on "prevention themes, such as dealing with peer pressure, conflict resolution, understanding media influences" and other issues, the release said.
The workshops, taught by professional artists from around the country, will be open to school-aged children in Little Falls and five neighboring communities.
"PEAK is based on recent research that has identified 40 assets (including art instruction) that have a direct relationship on a child's ability to make positive life choices," the release said. "The more of these 40 assets a child has, the less likely he or she is to become involved in violence, substance abuse, teen-age pregnancy and the more likely he or she will succeed in school."
The Musser grant will cover about one-fourth of the program's estimated costs, the release said.
Andrea Luhrs of Brainerd is performing with the St. Olaf College Choir this month on a nine-state concert tour. The 75-member group will perform in Minnesota, Wisconsin, Michigan, Ohio, West Virginia, North Carolina, Virginia, Pennsylvania and Illinois, plus Washington, D.C., the college announced in a news release.
The Minnesota Band Directors Association chose Amy Esperson, the daughter of Mary and Tom Esperson of Merrifield, for the ninth- and 10th-grade honor band. Esperson plays the bass clarinet in the Franklin Junior High School ninth-grade band. She will perform with a group directed by Robert Hallquist at the Minnesota In-Service clinic at noon Feb. 16 in the Grand Ballroom of the Minneapolis Convention Center.
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