• Enlivening Neighborhoods

    • 19 December 2017
    • Posted By Ellen Muse-Lindeman

    In July, more than 300 residents of all ages came together to celebrate five years of Play in the Park. One look at the diverse group of neighbors gathered in Kennedy Park making art, listening to music and connecting with one another – it would be hard to tell that five years ago this was the location of two homicides.

    Through the efforts of local volunteers, in partnership with Cincinnati Parks, Cincinnati Police, Kennedy Heights Arts Center and other groups, the neighborhood has reclaimed this public space and restored our sense of safety. Every week all summer long, people come together for a variety of community activities — and we’ve seen first-hand the power of the arts to connect and heal.

    On one of the first nights of Play in the Park, many residents gathered in a circle each with a small frame drum. Master percussionist Baba Charles Miller led the group in playing instruments and singing a traditional African song. One of the residents called the experience “magical” and “deeply moving” as our music rose up on a beautiful summer evening.

    The impact has been remarkable. There have been no more incidents of violence in the park. The police have hailed it as a model for combating violence and building community. Of course, there are many things and people who make Play in the Park a success, but those times we make music or create art together really connect us as a community.

    Kennedy Heights Arts Center has made a visible, revitalizing impact on our community — transforming two vacant buildings into vibrant community arts centers and bringing together more than 5,000 diverse residents every year through free arts and cultural experiences.

    The importance of the arts goes far beyond sharing creative experiences. In a world too often fractured and divided, the arts have the power to connect people, strengthen communities and restore a sense of belonging.

    We invite you to be a community builder with your tax-deductible contribution to Kennedy Heights Arts Center.

    This year’s Annual Fund goal is to raise $50,000, and we need your help to get there. Your financial support ensures that 100% of our programs are accessible to everyone regardless of ability to pay.

    Give Now


  • Bridging Cultural Divides

    • 4 December 2017
    • Posted By Ellen Muse-Lindeman

    Last spring, something truly special happened. We danced.

    Perhaps that doesn’t sound remarkable, but the experience generated a sense of joy and connection that’s rare. Guided by our artist-in-residence from Inlet Dance Theatre (Cleveland, OH), racially and economically diverse residents of all ages and all ability levels came together for one month to dance. In our core group of adults, the oldest was 75 years old and the youngest were in their 20s. 

    Strangers came together through the love of dance and formed strong bonds. Participants learned far more than dance steps; they built community.

    Participants called the whole experience “amazing,” saying “it opened up doors/windows for me,” and they “appreciated the ways of honoring people coming from a variety of backgrounds and abilities.”

    In a world too often fractured and divided, the arts have the unique power to connect people to each other and restore a sense of belonging.

    We invite you to join us in our mission by becoming a community builder with a tax-deductible donation to Kennedy Heights Arts Center. Your contribution helps ensure that 100% of our programs are accessible to everyone regardless of income.

    Give Today

  • Fueling Creativity

    • 20 November 2017
    • Posted By Ellen Muse-Lindeman

    Something special is happening in Kennedy Heights. Every day, we are seeing evidence of how the arts bring people together, fuel creativity and create a more vibrant neighborhood. Over the next few weeks we will share a few stories that demonstrate this impact – and how you can help.

    Lemuel Josiah Hogue – “L.J.” to his friends – first got involved at Kennedy Heights Arts Center at age 9 as a student in our summer arts camp.

    L.J. says he was drawn to art from the time he was a young boy. Being dyslexic, he had trouble reading, so his father would read comic books with him and the artwork in the comic books inspired him.

    In summer camp, L.J. was able to explore his creative side in many ways – drawing, painting, photography, drumming and more. To be honest, it was a little rough going for L.J. at first as he struggled to stay focused and to connect with peers in a positive way.

    But through his years at KHAC, his artistic skills not only grew but his social skills flourished as well, and surprising many, LJ became one of our strongest youth leaders.

    In 2012, he was invited by art instructor Cedric Cox to be an intern for our 2-week Camp Create which he did for several years, assisting instructors and younger students. Then, in 2015, L.J. approached us about volunteering at the arts center all summer long. I said “Are you sure about this? Working with kids all day, every day can be tiring.”

    But L.J. was determined. Over the course of the summer, he volunteered nearly 200 hours working with more than 100 campers. L.J. brought so much to our summer camp program. His joyful, positive demeanor towards campers, staff, and volunteers brightened each day while his confidence and responsibility for camp procedures helped all of the little details fall into place.

    Last year, L.J. graduated from Roger Bacon High School and went on to college – where he’s studying to be a teacher at Ohio State University. A student who once struggled, L.J. became a role model for others.

    We invite you to join us in our mission by becoming a community builder with a tax-deductible donation to Kennedy Heights Arts Center.  Your contribution helps ensure that 100% of our programs are accessible to everyone regardless of income

    Give Today


  • Celebrate Fall – and Community

    • 12 October 2017
    • Posted By Ellen Muse-Lindeman

    It’s that wonderful time of year. Kids are back in school, leaves are beginning to change colors, there’s a crispness in the air (that is, until it hits 80 degrees again)… it’s fall.

    That also means its time for Kennedy Heights Arts Center’s Fall Harvest Party, our annual celebration of the season for the community. The free event will include festive food and drink, live music, games and raffles, and interactive art activities. It’s sure to be fun for all ages.

    The Fall Harvest Party is also a wonderful opportunity to introduce new friends to Kennedy Heights Arts Center or learn more about us yourself. We will share a bit about our impact in the community and what makes KHAC special, as we kick of our 2017 annual fund campaign.

    We do hope you’ll join us.

  • Top 10 reasons why you should take an art class

    • 12 September 2017
    • Posted By Ellen Muse-Lindeman

    I get it. You’re busy with work and life demands, so fitting in an art class is hard. But nurturing your creative side is essential to your well-being — not to mention lots of fun.

    Artistic and creative expression offers many benefits. Here’s our top ten:

    1. It’s okay to make a mess!
    Leave the set up and cleanup of all those art supplies to us. Our studio is bright, open, and it can handle the drops of paints, splatters of glue, and scraps of fabric all over the floor when creativity is happening. So go ahead and let the kids (or you) make a mess.

    2. It relieves stress.
    Your life is busy, but it’s important to remember to take some time for yourself. A recent study found that 45 minutes of creative activity significantly lessens stress in the body, regardless of artistic experience or talent. (Study published in Art Therapy: Journal of the American Art Therapy Association, titled “Reduction of Cortisol Levels and Participants’ Responses Following Art Making” 2016).

    3. It exercises a new part of your brain.
    Is the creative part of your brain underfed? If you work in a highly analytical environment, then an art class is an excellent way to give your brain’s right side a rest and stretch the left side.

    4. It prepares kids for the future.
    Art enhances fine motor skills, hand-eye coordination, problem solving skills, lateral thinking, complex analysis and critical thinking skills. And art education increases creativity and open-mindedness. Creativity is cited by business leaders as the top leadership competency for the future. 

    5. You’ll look at the world in new ways.
    Art makes you look at things anew – even mundane ordinary aspects of the world. Communicating with color, shape, and form awakens your imagination.

    6. Get UNSTUCK.
    Our inner voices make harsh critics that can stop us before we even begin. Art teaches risk taking, learning from one’s mistakes, and being open to other possibilities. The camaraderie and support of fellow classmates and an encouraging instructor can be the push that you need to just start making!

    7. Challenge yourself.
    Learn something new! Whether it’s a new technique, a new medium, or if art in general is something you’ve never done before – learning new things strengthens us and gives us more confidence.

    8. Decorate your house/apartment.
    You’ll get so much joy from creating something yourself and having it be a unique addition to your home. And when someone compliments you on the art, you can tell people YOU made it!

    9. Meet new people.
    Taking a class together helps you learn new things about old friends and gives you something new to talk about when you go out. And you’ll meet cool new people you otherwise may have never known. Art reaches across racial stereotypes, religious barriers, and socio-economical levels and prejudices. Seeing other culture’s creative expression allows everyone to be more connected and less isolated.

    10. Rekindle your passion.
    Jealous of what kids made in summer camp and you want to make something, too? Nowadays, you’ve become too busy to keep old hobbies; however, indulging in an old passion could be the perfect remedy for refreshing your spirit.

    So what are you waiting for?

  • Send a Kid to Camp!

    • 3 May 2017
    • Posted By Ellen Muse-Lindeman

    This summer, more than 300 diverse youth will express their creativity through making art, dance, theatre, and music at Kennedy Heights Arts Center. In 28 different camps, they will paint murals, write poetry, create their own businesses, make scary movies, dig fossils, and became the next big fashion designers.

    Campers not only build skills, they build community. Racially and economically diverse kids get to know one another and develop friendships. Older students mentor younger ones and become leaders. Young people explore the world around them – and find their place in it.

    And thanks to the support of generous donors like you, these amazing experiences are made available to everyone regardless of ability to pay.      At Kennedy Heights Arts Center, no one is turned away. Last year, 65 low-income students received scholarships to attend summer arts camp at KHAC – amounting to over $9,400 in aid.

    Help a deserving child have a great summer by supporting KHAC’s Scholarship Fund. This year’s goal is to raise $10,000 by June 2.

    Your gift of:
    $35 – Sends a kid to camp for one day
    $75 – Sends a kid to camp for half a week
    $150 – Sends a kid to camp for one week
    $600 – Sends a kid to camp for a month
    $1,500 – Supports a child for the whole summer!

    Contributions of any size are welcome – and make a big difference in the life of a child.

    Donate Now

  • Teen Voices

    • 15 February 2017
    • Posted By Ellen Muse-Lindeman

    What matters to teens? What issues do they face?

    A group of six local youth, ages 12-16, used their creativity and the medium of film to create short videos that speak to teens. The group collaborated to create Public Service Announcements on teen issues including peer pressure, bullying, stress and depression.

    With the help of Robert Wilson of Your Productions, the teens wrote, filmed and produced the original videos. The PSAs will play on Cincinnati community access television. 

    All are invited to a film premiere on Friday, February 24 at 7pm in KHAC’s Lindner Annex (corner of Kennedy & Montgomery). Come see the final products and support our young artists!  

    This project was supported by a grant from The Charles H. Dater Foundation.

  • Planting Seeds in December

    • 29 November 2016
    • Posted By Ellen Muse-Lindeman

    The weather outside might be frightful, but I’m thinking about planting seeds.

    Twelve years ago, the view along Montgomery Road in Kennedy Heights was a sea of vacant buildings. One of the first racially integrated neighborhoods in Cincinnati, Kennedy Heights is a lively, welcoming place. But for too long this dynamic light hid under the bushel of blight and neglect. That is, until neighbors came together to transform their neighborhood.

    Into that barren landscape, residents planted seeds of hope and inspiration which sprouted Kennedy Heights Arts Center. A former funeral home became a community arts center. A vacant grocery store became a vibrant cultural campus. Neighboring properties were developed into artist studios. Now as you travel Montgomery Road, you see people gathering, children learning and expressing themselves, neighbors connecting: a community full of life.

    What is the secret ingredient of our success? ART.

    Kennedy Heights Arts Center employs the unique power of arts and culture to bring people together and cultivate community.

    But no beautiful garden stays that way by itself; it requires nurturing and cultivation. Your contribution is needed to help us flourish.

    Help us grow communities rich with hope and creativity. In a world too often divided, building community is more important than ever. 

    Cultivate community in Cincinnati with your tax-deductible donation today. Your investment in Kennedy Heights Arts Center makes a big difference—to a child discovering new-found talents, to a teen building confidence, to neighbors coming together—and ensures that 100 percent of our programs are accessible to everyone regardless of ability to pay.

    Donate today

    The seed you plant today will produce the harvest of tomorrow.

  • Spreading Seeds of Happiness

    • 29 November 2016
    • Posted By Ellen Muse-Lindeman

    These gardeners have a gift to share with the city.

    On September 9, Kennedy Heights Arts Center was invited by ArtsWave to help celebrate the grand opening of the Cincinnati Bell Connector downtown. KHAC Arts Education Coordinator Mallory Feltz, artist Karen Saunders and three students rode the streetcar in fabulous costumes, passing out seed packets to all the riders.

    The packets, adorned by work of local artists, promise to grow happiness, sprout hope, and cultivate community when shared.

    grow-happiness     sprout-hope     cultivate-community
    Art by (left to right): June Pfaff Daley, Milissa Michel, Cedric Michael Cox

    In a world that seems too often divided, its good to remember what connects us.

    Arts experiences spark dialogue and bring together diverse residents. Cultural and creative exchange produces deep and lasting social change. Sharing our stories breaks down walls, builds bonds, and makes our community stronger.

    These are the seeds that help our community-and world-flourish.

  • Tuesday - Friday: 10:00 - 5:00
  • Saturday: 11:00 - 4:00
  • Closed Sunday - Monday