President’s Letter

Dear Friends,

What a year! It’s no surprise that Friends adapted quickly and made the most of it. Lectures went on via ZOOM and thanks to the Mark and Mary Goff Fiterman Fund and no spatial limitations, expert speakers and meaningful monthly lectures drew many from all over. Much gratitude goes to the Friends Lecture committee and the strong support of Mia’s staff. 

Friends Only programs offered members engaging monthly curator-led tours that were recorded, uploaded, and archived to the Friends of the Institute webpage for viewing by the public.

Friends Only Book Club gave members the chance to discuss the museum’s monthly book selection led by a docent, who blended in a thoughtful tour of complementary artwork. Chairs worked hard to promote these activities to the Friends membership. 

Members could also count on the Friends Newsletter for a good read and a wide range of information about upcoming activities as well as happenings at Mia. Each issue included fun articles that fit a monthly theme selected by the editors to pull together an excellent newsletter. All newsletters are available for reading on the Friends webpage.

The Centennial committee continues to work hard to prepare and plan a fitting celebration of one hundred bountiful years of the Friends of the Institute, beginning in January of 2022.  

The Membership committee has made great strides to grow Friends membership. And to help celebrate the hundredth birthday, Friends is offering complimentary membership to our members and the public. Come January 2022, membership dues will resume and be payable every January in the future. A common renewal date in January for all members will greatly simplify the process.

Last but not least, Art in Bloom 2021 was a resounding success! The public received the unique virtual presentation of the thirty-eighth floral festival with great acclaim. Events were well attended, the gorgeous displays by commercial florists at their store locations drew much praise and,  even though virtual, the Pedestal Floral Artist’s creations were as spectacular as ever and could be viewed worldwide. All in all, this year’s spring event was a worthy welcome to spring, thanks to the hard work of a dedicated committee of volunteers and the expertise and steadfast support of Mia’s staff. See results from Barb Champ below.

There’s more to come in May and June. Don’t miss the May lecture with Native American artist-photographer Cara Romero, whose piece was part of the 2017 world-renowned Hearts of Our People exhibit at Mia.

Friends Only, Friends Book Club, and Art and Architecture all have excellent and fun programs planned. Be sure to read about the May goings-on in the Newsletter and register for the lecture activities.

Please mark May 27 on your calendars. I look forward “seeing” all of you at the 2020-2021 Annual meeting. It was a very different, but productive year for Friends.

Friends would also like to thank office coordinator Lizzi Ginsberg, who kept us all organized and in touch with Mia’s staff. Her contribution to Friend’s success this year cannot be underestimated. Lizzi is off to Chicago with exciting plans to begin graduate work at the Art Institute of Chicago. Mia and Friends thank her and wish her the very best in her future endeavors.