By SILE MOLONEY
Mind-Builders Creative Arts Center, a hub for arts education and teaching in the Northeast Bronx, will host a day of celebration, open and free to all with live entertainment, music and fun. family on Saturday, September 17, 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. The Portes Ouvertes Street Festival, now in its fifth year, will kick off the new 2022-2023 season at the center, and the event will include indoor and outdoor activities onsite at Mind- Builders, located at 3415 Olinville Avenue in Olinville.
Festival organizers said, “This year’s festival will feature special performances by the organization’s dance ensemble, music ensemble and karate students, and will be kicked off with a parade of second line and DJ KayKay. They added, “Interactive offerings include a talent contest where the public will choose the winners, games for the whole family, and demonstration classes in martial arts, Zumba© and yoga on the festival’s main stage.”
Additionally, visitors can participate in a raffle after touring Mind-Builders’ newly renovated state-of-the-art facilities and extensive collection of African arts, as well as learn about registration and scholarship opportunities.
Since its inception in 1978, Mind-Builders officials say the center has developed a unique peer-supported learning culture that is a critical resource for local young people with few other options for cultural enrichment. Instruction is offered in music (drums, piano, keyboard, brass, voice, etc.) and dance (ballet, hip hop, modern, African, tap, Zumba©).
Some of the institution’s programs include the Positive Youth Troupe (PYT) theater company; the Community Folk Culture program which benefits from an ongoing partnership with the Smithsonian; the Arts Passage XPress for teens and young adults; an arts-based Universal Pre-K program; an intergenerational orchestra and the African Art Docent project. Classes for the 2022-2023 season begin October 5 with over fifty classes offered each week.
Mind-Builders 5th Annual Open House Street Festival Program
10 a.m. – 12:30 p.m. – Visits to the building and African art
11:00 a.m. to 1:30 p.m. – Examples of dance, music, martial arts lessons
1:00 p.m. – 4:00 p.m. – Demonstration classes and student performances
4:00 p.m. – 5:00 p.m. – Second Line & Talent Contest/Prize Cash
10 a.m. – 6 p.m. – Street vendors [list still in formation] will hold their booths and include Bizkochitoz y mas; Kevin Riley, District 12 City Council Member, Feminists for Men Inc.; Montefiore Medical Center; Congresswoman Nathalia Fernandez (AD 80); New York Public Library; New York Communities for Health; the Payano corner shop; Racial Justice Commission and Verizon.
Special guests include State Senator Jamaal T. Bailey (SD 36), District 11 City Councilman Eric Dinowitz, Assemblywoman Nathalia Fernandez (AD 80), Bronx Borough President Vanessa Gibson, Assembly Speaker Carl Heastie (AD 83), District 12 City Councilman Kevin Riley, and Althea Stevens, District 16 City Councilmember.
Founded in 1978, Mind-Builders representatives said the organization is a pioneering non-profit organization founded by educator and scholar Madaha Kinsey-Lamb, to bring arts education and teaching to the Northeast. east of the Bronx, inspiring the growth of generations of young people and local families through quality artistic programming.
Mind-Builders brings together best practices in arts education, youth development, and community engagement in the belief that a healthy community is an essential ingredient of healthy development. Alumni of the program include Alimi Ballard, Gilbert Glenn Brown, Ayodele Casel, Charles Malik Whitfield and Victoria Gabrielle Platt, among others.
For more information, visit: https://www.mind-