For the second year, Cleveland Museum of Art Parade the Circle outreach artists worked with YWCA Greater Cleveland Early Learning Center preschool children, staff and families for their appearance in the annual parade. Together, they produced this year’s theme as, YWCA Preschool Superheroes Save Kindergarten. Children chose their own superhero and parents and staff were villains out to destroy kindergarten. Outreach artist Chuck Supinski and Julia Ware helped the children create unique superhero characters.
“I would like to congratulate and applaud the staff and children of the YWCA Early Education Program. This is the second year my team and I have worked with your children and their teachers. We had a wonderful time creating superheroes. From the beginning, when the children created their own idea and superhero character to the dazzling end when they bejeweled their shield, a great time was had by all,” Supinski said. “I can’t say enough about your staff whose love and care for the children is reflected in the children’s interest and creativity. We look forward to next year’s Parade Project.”
Cleveland Museum of Art Parade the Circle artists worked YWCA staff and students to design each student’s superhero character, such as Tomato Man for the preschool boy who loves ketchup. He would squirt ketchup on his enemies to save to kindergarten. Love Girl loves giving everyone hugs and wanted to share love to save the day. Other superhero names include Moon Man, Ninja Boy, Acorn Girl, Super Butterfly Girl, and of course Flash Man.
“This year’s Parade the Circle experience was awesome! This was the YWCA of Cleveland’s second year being involved in the festivities and it just keeps getting better. The artists, Chuck, Julia, and Lu were great and worked diligently (and tirelessly) helping us make our own costumes, the children and staff loved it,” said Carol Lyles, YWCA Early Learning Center. “The artist’s and Tatiana’s enthusiasm and creativity made the process of preparing for the parade experience mega fun. I especially enjoyed working closely with the artists at the tent where the action was. Tatiana was the superhero who made all of it possible. It is amazing to see how an idea comes to fruition and blossoms into a grand project. We are all looking forward to next year, wondering, what will they come up with next?”
During the ten art sessions from May 10 – June 9 the students and teachers gleamed with joy making their capes, masks, belts, and shields. Teachers and parents visited the Parade the Circle tent site at Cleveland Museum of Art to make their villain costumes. The last two sessions included choreography from Ms. Story Robinson from Parade the Circle staff. On parade day, June 10, the YWCA Greater Cleveland group had 32 participants including parents, children, teachers, and Cleveland Central Promise Neighborhood staff members, Tatiana Wells and Richaun Bunton. The superheroes swarmed the villains in the parade to take away their powers and saved the day.
“It is safe to say, the YWCA of Cleveland preschoolers are some of Cleveland’s finest superheroes! Thanks to these superheroes, all children are able to enter kindergarten safely,” said Tatiana Wells, Early learning navigator, Cleveland Central Promise Neighborhood. “I enjoyed working with the teachers, students, and parade staff again this year. This was the best one yet. Looking forward to what we shall create next year.”
For 28 years, the Cleveland Museum of Art has been bringing this free signature summer event to Cleveland. During the event, University Circle comes alive with color, music, and art for all ages. International and national guest artists join Greater Cleveland artists, families, schools, and community groups in a spectacular display of bright costumes, giant puppets, stilt dancers, handmade masks, and colorful floats. Circle Village, which includes activities, entertainment, and food, is presented by University Circle Inc.