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Literary Luncheon Astronaut~Author~Artist, Nicole Stott
Celebrating 21 years of the Literary Luncheon! Each year, the CSHPTG (Jr./Sr. High School parent/teacher organization) sponsors their largest fundraiser, the "Literary Luncheon." All funds raised support the Cultural Arts Programs brought in for all the schools in the district. This year, the CSHPTG was pleased to introduce, Nicole Stott, who spoke about her book, Back to Earth on March 22 to a sold-out crowd at the Huntington Crescent Club.
Nicole is an astronaut, an artist, an author and a mom who lived at the International Space Station for over 100 days. After a twenty-eight-year career in NASA she founded the Space for Art Foundation, and has spoken to audiences around the world including the United Nations and the Vatican. She has been featured in National Geographic’s One Strange work and her artwork is displayed in the Smithsonian Air and Space Museum. At the luncheon she shared her journey about what life in space taught her, our home on planet earth, and our mission to protect it. Prior to the luncheon, Principal Daniel Danbusky and Art Department Chair, Christine Oswald (along with district art teachers), invited her to speak to grades 9-12 and then welcomed her into the art classes. Students were thrilled to showcase “space art” district-wide, share projects they are involved in to make a difference in our world, (including the Memory Project), give a tour of the Gottschalk Gallery exhibit, and listen and learn through discussion with Ms. Stott. She shared how she navigated the learning process of doing watercolor paintings in space; how gravity manipulates the water into floating bubbles and how she learned to control how they were attracted to the brush and paper. Students were also fascinated to learn the International Space Station orbits the earth 16 times a day every 92 minutes; that’s 16 sunsets and 16 sunrises per day! Thank you to Ms. Stott who took the time to answer so many questions at the luncheon on the importance of space travel and the discoveries made to better understand our earth and its environmental challenges, how we are all interconnected, and how we can help protect our planetary home.
Thank you to this year’s Literary Luncheon committee, and chairperson Caroline Tsekerides, for yet another amazing and inspiring afternoon. Caroline would like to extend her thanks to the numerous committee members for their tireless dedication to the success of this luncheon. Planning begins a year in advance for this event, and the district is so grateful as all proceeds benefit the Cultural Arts Programs K-12.
(The Cultural Arts Committee exists because of the support of parents and the District Administration. They are committed to and recognize that exposure to the Arts is a fundamental component to the educational process. The committee of volunteer parents works with principals and teachers to provide a broad spectrum of quality program opportunities within the daily curriculum. These programs encourage and strengthen each student’s ability to think critically and creatively.)