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Noteworthy News for Wednesday, Jan. 11, 2012

The Bangor Symphony Orchestra recently received a $4,500 grant from the Maine Charity Foundation Fund of the Maine Community Foundation to support the Bangor Symphony Youth Orchestras’ 2011-12 season. The Bangor Symphony Youth Orchestras, an education program of the Bangor Symphony Orchestra, gives qualified middle- and high-school students the opportunity to work with BSO musicians and gain performance experience in an encouraging and motivating environment. The BSYO comprise students who are invited, following an audition, to join one of the two ensembles, the Prelude Orchestra and the Philharmonic Orchestra. The BSYO seeks to fill a gap in music education provided in the region by providing students with an advanced level music making opportunity. For information about the Maine Community Foundation, visit mainecf.org or call 877-700-6800. For information about the Bangor Symphony Orchestra, call 942-5555 or visit bangorsymphony.org.

The Belfast Maskers recently held an awards ceremony to recognize the contributions of several volunteers. Receiving awards were Steven Wickenden for his contributions to set design and construction and Karen Bresznyak for her work with makeup, hair and costuming. Dorothy Wilson received the Volunteer of the Year Award. She performed a variety of off-stage duties as chairwoman of the properties department. She also served as stage manager in several Maskers production. Eric Marshall received special recognition. He has been a volunteer with the organization for more than 20 years, appearing in many shows and assisting backstage, running lights and sound and various other duties. For information, visit BelfastMaskers.com.

During the holiday season, Maine Business School master’s students from the University of Maine conducted a toy drive to benefit the Downeast Elementary School. Student Anna Assenmacher organized and led the effort to collect toy and cash donations. Approximately 150 toys were wrapped and delivered to the school in mid-December.

The members of Bangor Roller Derby donated more than $2,000 worth of gifts to ensure that mothers at Spruce Run in Bangor would have a merry Christmas. The group raised the money for the gifts and purchased four gifts for each woman, so that the children could wrap the presents and give them to their moms. Bangor Roller Derby is a skater owned and operated nonprofit organization with a focus on community involvement and empowering community members. Spruce Run Domestic Violence Project is dedicated to serving people affected by domestic abuse in our community while working simultaneously to eliminate personal, institutional and cultural violence against all individuals. For information, email info@bangorrollerderby.com.

The students of Hermon Elementary School traveled on Dec. 16 to The Collins Center for the Arts at the University of Maine in Orono, where they were treated to a special Nutcracker performance performed by The Robinson Ballet Company. The performance was made possible through a Target Arts and Culture Grant and the coordination and work of The Bangor Symphony Orchestra, The Robinson Ballet Company, The Collins Center for the Arts, the Hermon School Department and the Hermon Elementary School PTA. The grant was awarded to the school in August. Each classroom was given a book and audio CD based on the original story by E.T.A. Hoffmann in preparation for the performance. The goal of the grant and performance was to expose the students to art and culture they otherwise might not have the opportunity to take advantage of.

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