When every-day is St. Patrick's Day! If you believe in green four leaf clover shamrocks and castles by the sea. Oh-I, dare, dare to dream... Highland mountains and Loch Ness winds ~ Oh-I, dare, dare to dream...
Supporting our endeavors gives children and adults with autism spectrum disorders a wee chance to dream, display their artwork, and share their vision through the arts and reach for that Pot-of-Gold just over that Irish rainbow http://www.AutismArts.com
Below you will find brief descriptive sections of our project, mission, and purpose.
Sandy McMurray and Donna Samuels
McMurray A.R.T.S. Center & Autism Arts
Come vist our virtual Art Gallery at: www.AutismArts.com
WHAT IS AUTISM?
McMURRAY A.R.T.S. CENTER?
WHAT IS AUTISM?____________________________________________________________
Autism is a complex developmental disability that typically appears during the first three years of life and is the result of a neurological disorder that affects the functioning of the brain. Autism and its associated behaviors have been estimated to occur in as many as 1 in 500 individuals. Autism is four times more prevalent in boys than girls and knows no racial, ethnic, or social boundaries.
____________________________________________________________ PROJECT BEHIND THE CELTIC HARVEST?
The first Celtic Harvest for Autism was organized on October 10, 1999, when I was then acting Vice-president to our local sister chapter here in Michigan to the Autism Society of America, along with Director, Monica Chesnik, whose idea actually spearheaded this project.
The idea was to have a concert fund raiser for our local parent group to raise funds for our chapter. Monica then asked Irish folk singer, Charlie Taylor, also her friend, to consider donating his time and talent for our families. Mr. Taylor graciously accepted.
Then, I was introduced to Mr. Ed Neubacher, Past-president to the Fraternal Order of United Irishmen; former Grand Marshall to Detroit's Annual St. Patrick's Day Parade; and he has been instrumental in the development of St. Patrick Senior Center, Inc. Which is a food program for the under privileged here in Detroit for the past 25 years. At this time, I also met Charlie Taylor.
Both, Ed and Charlie, organized an amateur musical group called the Chowder Society (featured on our CD). Their intention was to get a group of guys together to sing ole Irish favorites just for fun and the camaraderie. Over the past twenty five years, this group has grown and has received invitations to Irish functions throughout the entire Detroit Metropolitan area, as well as opportunities to perform for numerous nursing and assisted living homes for senior citizens.
Since the first Celtic Harvest, Monica and I, along with my good friend Donna Samuels (all mothers of children affected by autism) decided to try the concept of developing an 'Art & Music' program for autistic children and adults. Though this proposed program is still in the developing stages, and we are hopeful that our endeavors will soon blossom into a beneficial opportunity for many affected by this spectrum disorder.
In the late winter of 2000, Monica and I, left positions held in our local chapter and are concentrating our energies toward the development of the McMurray A.R.T.S. Center & Autism Arts.
The second Celtic Harvest was organized on November 19, 2000, and again, many of the same (and some new) local Irish Musicians came out, this time, in support of the concept of the proposed Center. We then made a 'live' recording of all the entertainers in order to create the Celtic Harvest Live ~ Irish Musicians for Autism CD.
It is because of Ed and Charlie's continued support and political stature within the Irish community that truly has made our endeavor a success! We want to thank them for their support. They are both very special to us.
CONTRIBUTORS FOR THE CELTIC HARVEST LIVE CD?
BERNIE PRENDERGAST, Irish Artist from Co. Mayo, Ireland donated the "Fiddler" charcoal drawing for our front cover of the CD. It's beautiful portrayal of an Irish musician fit right into our motif. Contact Bernie on the Web at:
JULIAN VANSLYKE, a Design Engineer who created the logos for Autism Arts and the McMurray A.R.T.S. Center, used his unique and creative abilities to masterfully blend our national symbol for autism awareness with our mission and purpose. We are deeply appreciative for all the help and expertise he provided.
The 'puzzle pieces' symbol is world renowned and is a universal marker to identify and support individuals within the autistic spectrum. Each organization, either national or of international stature, has their very own unique way of displaying the symbolic puzzle pieces on behalf of individuals affected by an autism spectrum disorder.
The ideology behind these colorful puzzle pieces are to:
'Help Solve The Puzzle of Autism Spectrum Disorders'.
CHILDREN'S ARTWORK (illustrated inside panels of the CD)
Joshua Samuels - Brick Art (Kentucky)
Brian Phillips - There is always Hope (New York)
Ryan McMurray - Watermelon Days (Michigan)
Phillip McMurray - Irish Clover (Michigan)
Reed Freshbach - Ice Cream (California)
Michael Torrice - 'Forest of Feelings' and the 'Caring Bridge' (Michigan)
PRODUCERS: PETE HASSETT and RICK McMURRAY
Golden Ear Mobile Services & Golden Ear Studios
Pete Hassett, President
Pete, thank you dearly for donating your time and equipment to record the Celtic Harvest Live ~ Irish Musicians for Autism. It truly was a labor of love for our cause. I personally know how hard you worked on this project with the countless hours that went into the mix-down and final master of the CD.
Rick, thank you for organizing all the musicians, keeping everything on-track, and running smoothly at the benefit, as well as including your group Shamrock Shore. What a great way for you and Uncle Steve to honor Phillip and Ryan!
Brain Pawlik and George De La Rosa, thank you for your assistance with the recording. Also behind the scenes, Kelly Griner and Chris Torrice for their input on the graphics and design layout.
Last, but certainly not least, all the Irish musicians that donated their time and talent for the Celtic Harvest Live. You are so appreciated, and thank you from the bottom of our hearts. What a very special way to give back to the community on behalf of individuals affected within the autistic spectrum.
Musicians Irish Blessing
May there always be work for your hands to do.
May your purse always hold a coin or two.
May the sun always shine on your windowpane.
May a rainbow be certain to follow each rain.
May the hand of a friend be always near you,
and may God fill your heart with gladness to
We would like to take this opportunity to thank our other supporters:
Fraternal Order of United Irishmen
Ancient Order of Hibernians (Fr. Solanus Casey Division)
Fr. Steven Keogh and the Irish Pallottine Fathers
Kathleen O' Neil and the Irish Hour
Friendly Sons of St. Patrick
Heinzman School of Irish Dance
The Irish Rose
The Celtic Shamrock
Flynn Travel Service
Mack Avenue Diner
____________________________________________________________ WHAT IS AUTISM ARTS?
"Autism Arts" is a worldwide collection of artwork from our loved ones affected within the autistic spectrum. Our objective is to create a positive image and much needed awareness on behalf of those who cannot advocate for themselves.
Check out the artist's website:
1. Introduction - Sandy McMurray & Cecil Williams (pipes)
2. Town of Bally Bay - The Diggers
3. Irish Rover - Terry Murphy & Billy Dixon
4. Good Bye/muirsheen Durkin - Charlie Taylor & Larry Larson
5. Spancil Hill - Another Pint
6. Star of the County Down - Michael O' Brian and the Distractions
7. Sean Ryan's/Dennis Murphy Polka - Michael O' Brian and the Distr
8. Autism Arts - Sandy McMurray & Cecil Williams
9. Drunken Sailor - Chowder Society
10. Hills of Connemara - Shamrock Shore
11. Boston Rose - The Diggers
12. Shrine Highlanders - Pipe & Drum
13. Dublin Town - Jim Buckingham
14. Bridget Flynn - Larry Larson & Charlie Taylor
15. Loch Lomand - Terry Murphy & Billy Dixon
16. Foggy Dew - Lynne Reid & Company
17. Gypsy Rover - Chowder Society
18. Irish Blessing - Father Steven Keogh
19. Tribute to Father Steven Keogh - Dennis Hayes, President, United
20. Autism Arts - Sandy McMurray & Cecil Williams (pipes)
21. Shule Aroon - Rollande Krandall
22. Moonshiner - Terry Murphy & Billy Dixon
23. Morris Manly/bally Desmond - Fiddle N' Friends
24. Seven Old Ladies - Charlie Taylor & Larry Larson
25. The Town I Love So Well - Another Pint
26. The Art of Living With Autism - Sandy McMurray & Cecil Williams