Visual Arts Center of New Jersey Held Annual Bourbon Bash

Visual Arts Center of New Jersey Held Annual Bourbon BashOn Friday, October 26, the Visual Arts Center of New Jersey held its annual fall fundraising event, Bourbon Bash: Going Hog Wild for Art, with the unique theme contributing to a fun party atmosphere in the Art Center studios and galleries. Nearly $30,000 was raised through a combination of ticket sales, sponsorships, and revenue from a silent art auction featuring work created by outsider and self-taught artists.

Highlights from the evening included live music by the country-jazz band the String Gliders out of Brooklyn; a carefully crafted southern-style menu by Summit House Restaurant + Bar that featured specialty bourbon cocktails and a variety of bacon-themed dishes; and a craft bourbon tasting room, presented by Jim Beam's Maker's Mark. "This year's fall fundraiser offered a more casual, party-like atmosphere to guests while still focusing on the Art Center's mission of creating an inclusive and welcoming community where lives are transformed and enriched through the shared experience of art," said Melanie Cohn, the Art Center's executive director. "To this end, Bourbon Bash was a success on multiple levels. Not only did we meet our fundraising goal, but we were able to present a fun-filled evening to both new and long-time supporters."

In addition to the festivities associated with the Bourbon Bash, sponsors of the event also received an invitation to the VIP screening and NJ premiere of the Sundance Documentary, The Price of Everything, held on November 6 at the Art Center. Gold sponsorships for the event were provided by: Cartier, Amy Knight, Audrey and Zygi Wilf, and Jane and Mark Wilf. Silver Sponsors included: Dylan and Melissa Baker; Murali Balasubramanian, J.P. Morgan Securities; Anne and RJ Grissinger; Betse and Frank Gump; Lindabury, McCormick, Estabrook & Cooper, P.C.; Larissa and Timothy Reick; Ann and Mel Schaffer; and Debi and Fred Schwarzmann. Bronze sponsors for the evening were: Lori and Andrew Bush; Lisa Butler and Bob Kelly; Marie and Roy Alan Cohen; Siobhan Creem; David Dietze and Claire Toth, Point View Wealth Management, Inc.; Estelle Fournier, Partner in Art; Beth Gibson, The Oldendorp Group; Alison and David O'Neill; Rebecca and Declan Ryan; Joanie Schwarz and Don Rosenthal; John Simoudis and Jerry Rose; and Liz Skoler and Mark Becker. The Art Center would also like to thank community partners ABC Party Center of Chatham and Otterstedt Insurance Agency in Summit for their generosity.

For 85 years, the Visual Arts Center of New Jersey has been exclusively dedicated to viewing, making, and learning about contemporary art. Recognized as a leading non-profit arts organization, the Art Center's renowned studio school, acclaimed exhibitions, and educational outreach initiatives serve thousands of youth, families, seniors, and people with special needs every year.

The Visual Arts Center of New Jersey is located at 68 Elm Street in Summit, NJ. Adult and children's group tours are available throughout the year. Gallery Hours: Monday to Wednesday and Friday, 10 AM-5 PM; Thursday, 10 AM-8 PM; and Saturday & Sunday, 11 AM-4 PM. Please call 908.273.9121 to confirm holiday hours. Visit for more information.

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