Hilltop Artists, a local nonprofit dedicated to empowering youth through art, is celebrating the holiday season by hosting a Winter Glass Sale. The unique works of glass art are handcrafted by the Tacoma Public School students who participate in Hilltop Artists glass-blowing programs. Pieces for sale include ornaments and other seasonally themed decorations, as well as jewelry, vases, bowls, and more. All proceeds go back into the organization’s tuition-free programs.
Hilltop Artists began in 1994 by Tacoma-born artist Dale Chihuly and Tacoma gallery owner Kathy Kaperick. The two co-founded the program in an effort to provide youth in the Hilltop neighborhood an alternative to joining groups proliferating violence or crime, a growing problem at the time. Hilltop Artists partnered with Tacoma Public Schools and, over the years, has set up high-quality hot shops at Jason Lee Middle School and Wilson High School. The organization serves over 650 students a year through tuition-free glass instruction. In 2018, student-generated glass sales reached over $150,000, which went directly back into the program.
A recent study from the Institute of Urban Research found that students enrolled in arts classes see reductions in disciplinary infractions, increases in interpersonal skills, and improved school engagement. By never turning a student away based on past behavior, grades, or ability, Hilltop Artists creates a positive environment for students with less access to other after-school activities.
The Winter Glass Sale provides the opportunity to support local youth, while also finding a great gift or holiday decoration. The sale is open to the public and free to attend. It will be held between 10 a.m. and 1 p.m., Dec. 7, at Jason Lee Middle School. Visit this website for more information.