Greater Harrisburg's Community Magazine

The Painted Word: For spring, a trip to Carlisle, a loop around Wildwood.

Spring is its own reason for a road trip just 30 minutes away to view great art and visit a quaint boulevard.

Anyone looking for charm in historic Carlisle need look no further than Pomfret Street. At first glance, you may think it is perhaps a street in Georgetown or Colonial Williamsburg. Pomfret is one block, chock full of great restaurants, a teahouse, gift shops and one-of-a-kind stores.

The gem that anchors it all is the Carlisle Arts Learning Center (CALC). Art gallery and educational emporium rolled into one, CALC is located at 38 W. Pomfret St. in the old firehouse building. CALC truly stands out as a distinguished destination for all art lovers, no matter which side of the river they live on.

CALC recently celebrated 25 years of building community through the arts. Exhibits change bi-monthly under the creative vision of gallery Curator Cathy Stone and Executive Director Becky Richeson. CALC generates almost half its revenue with contributions, with grant funding providing the balance.

Upcoming events for spring start unfolding April 26, with a dual-artist show entitled “Imagery and Field.”

This exhibit features a contrast from Harrisburg-based artists Mary Hochendoner and Maaike Heitkonig in the lower gallery street level.

Hochendoner paints with detailed imagery that is juxtaposed with Heitkonig’s subtle, color fieldwork. Her dreamlike style is simultaneously symbolic and narrative, providing a pivotal point to Heitkonig’s works, which more engender spatial and emotional feelings.

Upstairs, the CALC collaborative will house “The Real Faces of Homelessness” from Carrie Breschi, a founding force of CALC and former gallery director. Mounted through 2-D and 3-D installations, Breschi’s works will explore the faces of homelessness and the community misconceptions that accompany this profound societal problem. Her work shines a spotlight on what too-often is an invisible population.

CALC’s far-reaching educational components include classes available to the public across all mediums of the fine arts. Summer art camps for children ages 5 to 15 start when school ends and run through the start of the new school year in August.

“S.E.E. Art Salon” is another program through CALC, featuring in-house art salons through lectures and field trips. Of interest on May 9 is a trip to the Glenstone art museum, located in Potomac, Md. The exhibit includes the works of Louise Bourgeoise and a guided tour of the monumental sculpture garden. This trip is free by carpool so RSVP by April 17 at 717-249-6973.

The acronym, CALC, represents the first four letters of “calculated.” It’s a destination you will want to make plans for in the near future. No risk involved.


Art in the Wild

By its very nature, spring is unpredictable. However, eventually, the birds return, the bunnies bound, and we humans come out of our winter hibernation.

To partake of the local offerings amid the beauty of seasonal change, a good place to start is in your own backyard—figuratively speaking.

For the seventh year since its inception in 2012, “Art in the Wild,” sponsored by Dauphin County Parks and Recreation and Friends of Wildwood, will unveil a group of art created with a love of nature.

By definition, “Art in the Wild” lends itself to its founding premise—that the art be formed by found objects within the framework of the park. Fallen limbs, gnarly grapevine, trustworthy trees and verdant moss abound for artists to cull and create their vision around a unifying theme.

Unveiled to the public on April 13, the installations are available for viewing through Oct. 31. The theme this year is “Playful,” perfect for inspiration after our long, cold winter.

Wildwood Park and “Art in the Wild” are environmental and cultural gems. Just traversing the six miles of trails amidst the park’s 229 acres, which includes 90 acres of wetlands, is a visual treat no matter the season. And the subtle changes the seasons bring to the installations are noteworthy in that nature alters the canvas to suit its will.

Perhaps the greatest insight for reflection is to catch “Art in the Wild” early in April, then again at the height of summer and again before its last breath at October’s end.
The Carlisle Arts Learning Center (CALC) is located at 38 W. Pomfret St., Carlisle. For more information, visit


Wildwood Park is located at 100 Wildwood Way, Harrisburg. For more information, visit

“The Painted Word” will appear every few months to highlight a group of upcoming artistic exhibitions in central Pennsylvania.

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