WRITTEN BY: SAMANTHA AHNEN, MARKETING INTERN
Cummer Amelia is celebrating more than 10 years of dedicated service to the Cummer Museum. The group’s focus is to connect Nassau County residents to the Museum’s mission of engaging and inspiring through arts, gardens, and education. This year, Cummer Amelia experienced record-breaking attendance, increased volunteer support, new sponsors, enhanced partnerships, and fully funded school tours for Nassau County third and fourth-grade students. Cummer Amelia also joined fundraising efforts for two important initiatives at the Museum, the National Endowment for the Humanities Challenge Grant and the Garden Reconstruction Fund, providing contributions from more than 100 Nassau County donors.
Each year, the Cummer Amelia calendar includes events and programming that inspire lifelong learning, instill a deeper appreciation for the arts and gardens, and raise impactful funds for the Museum. This year, these events included:
- An October Kickoff, featuring a performance by student musicians and a presentation by local artist and Cummer Amelia member, Kathy Miller.
- An Artistic Florist Sneak Preview welcomed the holiday season with a fundraising cocktail hour to view the designer’s new showroom.
- A Lunch, Lecture, & Tours fall program hosted Aja Raden, best-selling author of “Stoned: Jewelry, Obsession, and How Desire Shapes the World”, relating her book to the exhibition Bijoux Parisiens French Jewelry from the Petit Palais, Paris. The spring program featured Sharon Core, contemporary photographer, with a presentation related to her work in the exhibition In the Garden.
- Cocktails & Canvases was hosted and sponsored by Omni Amelia Island Plantation, giving guests an unmatched experience with artists, mixologists, and chefs. The main event included an immersive culinary and visual arts dinner.
- Cummer Amelia’s Fourth Annual Garden Walk fundraiser featured tours of four private gardens and a Garden Market offering plants and garden accessories. The event hosted more than 350 guests, volunteers, and vendors. This event provided $8,000 in revenue and in-kind support of $10,000.
- Marshes & Moonlight invited more than 100 guests to enjoy live music, delicious food, and beautiful scenery. Generously hosted by Brian & Candace Loftus and Tommy & Becky Grimes, this pre-Garden Walk event raised more than $13,000 to fund Cummer Amelia’s outreach for 2019 and gifted more than $15,000 of in-kind support.
- An Afternoon of Art, in partnership with the Fernandina Beach Branch of the Nassau County Library System, was a very successful series of four lectures focused on the historical impact of women artists. The series was free and open to the public, and attracted 324 guests.
In addition to these special events and programs, Cummer Amelia’s fundraising efforts allowed more than 600 Nassau County students, parents, and teachers to visit the Museum for a day of art education. These trips include time in the galleries and gardens, transportation, and hands-on studio time.
Cummer Amelia was once again recognized at the Director’s Circle level of the Museum’s Ponce de León Society for annual contributions exceeding $45,000 in revenue, as well as $100,000 of in-kind support this year. Sponsorships and partnerships have increased by 75% over the past year.
Thank you to all the members of Cummer Amelia, who contribute not only financially, but also give time and talent to the Museum through volunteerism. Special thanks to Cummer Amelia’s board, sponsors, partners, and community supporters for promoting the mission and goals of Cummer Amelia this year!