On April 6, Friends of Hearst Castle facilitated its fourth ArtReach workshop, bringing
together both learned and learning artists on the hilltop at Hearst Castle. ArtReach unites
6th through 9th grade middle school students with accomplished artists for meaningful mentoring
in a process-driven art experience.
Friends of Hearst Castle Reaches Out with Art
ArtReach was launched in 2010 as a visual arts program that partners San Luis Obispo County’s
talented artists with
underserved youth seeking artistic outlets and visual expression. Funded
in part by proceeds from Plein Air Invitational art sales at Twilight on the Terrace and bids
for education at Enchanted Evening auctions, the ArtReach program has been a collaboration with
the North County Regional Division of the YMCA of San Luis Obispo County and to date has given
over 60 youngsters the hands-on opportunity to experiment with various forms of media – watercolor,
pastel, charcoal and pencil – all under the guidance of producing artists.
Three ArtReach programs took place in 2010, allowing mentors and mentees to paint from the
observation deck and surrounding grounds at the Visitor Center. A fourth program was held on
April 6, 2011 that granted artists and protégés a rare opportunity to paint from a hilltop
terrace beneath Hearst Castle’s main house, La Casa Grande.
part of the day’s activities, artists and students were treated to the movie, Hearst Castle,
Building the Dream in the Hearst Castle Theater, a tour of the Castle and a picnic style lunch.
At the conclusion of the mentoring session, refreshments were served while each student was
introduced and presented a Certificate of Achievement along with a color wheel in recognition
of their work.
“The Y finds this effort to be of great value to the kids,” said Shelly Dargatz, North County
Regional Director of the YMCA. “They always come back with great things to say about the trip…
thanks for your continued effort in supporting the youth in our county by reaching out through
art in such a creative way.”
FHC Board member and ArtReach committee chair Evelyn Plemons stated “We are so proud that deserving
youngsters are able to experience the many facets of art – history, collecting, appreciating and
hands-on creativity at one of our State’s most magnificent treasures, the Hearst Castle. We hope
this program will continue to grow and reach out further into the community.”