Special to the Journal
On June 6, the Cultural Activities Center dedicated the art wing studio in the name of former Visual Arts Director Marilyn Ritchie. Mrs. Ritchie started employment for the CAC in 1994 as the Visual Arts Director, and worked for 20 years creating classes, teaching pottery, coordinating summer arts camp, and hosting national and international exhibits for the non-profit organization.
The visual art department of the CAC is responsible in selecting and installing various engaging community exhibits, coordinating and teaching art classes and workshops, and providing art opportunities to enhance the quality of life for Central Texas. Since Mrs. Ritchie has been responsible for cultivating the arts for the CAC and throughout Central Texas for 20 years, the CAC staff, and CAC board wanted to honor Mrs. Ritchie’s legacy by naming the studio in her name.
“Whether your love is playing in clay, or participating in various art workshops, Mrs. Ritchie made everyone excited about the arts,” said CAC marketing director Jane Boone. “It’s only fitting that students get to create in a studio named for a woman who lived her life passionately for the arts for Central Texas.”
“The CAC has given me the joy of teaching and working with artists, local and international,” said Marilyn Ritchie. “In other words, I was doing a job I loved. It was an unexpected honor to have the area in which I have enjoyed many happy hours of my time, dedicated in my name.”
Mrs. Ritchie still teaches clay classes Tuesday evenings from 6 p.m.-9 p.m. and Fridays from 9 a.m.-noon throughout the fall and spring, with summer sessions varying; however, all class times are updated and posted on the CAC’s website. Students are encouraged to sign up at the CAC and get instruction from a clay legend.
The CAC held a dedication ceremony and presented Mrs. Ritchie with a plaque and the unveiling of her name above the art studio door. Remarks were given by colleagues and friends Dr. Wynona Alexander and Elaine Dobos. The CAC celebrated the memories and accomplishments of Marilyn with friends and the public.
“Marilyn has had many titles, and is dear to us all in different ways,” said Jane Boone. “Over the years at the CAC we have called her friend, grandma during summer arts camp, mentor, art teacher, and clay class guru just to name a few. We are happy to honor her legacy with this dedication.”
The Cultural Activities Center while planning for future upkeep of the art studio, and to showcase Mrs. Ritchie’s legacy would like to invite anyone interested to make a monetary contribution to the Marilyn Ritchie Art Wing. The Cultural Activities Center is located at 3011 North Third Street in Temple, the CAC hosts several exhibit openings, classes, stage performances, Texas music concerts, classical performances, and more events throughout the year. For more information on upcoming events, visit cacARTS.org or call 254-773-9926.