ArtWorks! - Changing Lives through Art!

Our community spirit is best exemplified by First Night ArtWorks!, our year-round arts outreach program that culminates on New Year's Eve. This year hundreds of young people and families from all around Monterey County participated with professional artists in hands-on creative workshops in the visual arts and music programs at community sites all around the county. Their work is on exhibit everywhere you look, from the murals, paintings of the sea and sea animals to the large-scale fish created out of plastic bottles! Schools of bioluminescent jelly fish made out of plastic bottles, and large fish made out of plastic will be on exhibit. The Marina Teen Center youth participated in a hip hop music workshop and composed an original hip hop song which they will perform at First Night. Monterey County's youth are at the heart of First Night and families coming together is one of the joys of FNM and exemplifies our hopes and dreams for 2014.


Greenfield Summer Art Camp: our annual free art camps for middle school students.
Exhibits: Artists' Reception, Greenfield Harvest Festival, First Night Monterey
Gonzales Library Art Camp - SeaChanges
Once a month, Nina Parris has been teaching drawing, painting and working with plastic bottles with the youth in Gonzales.
Sea Cycle Prints - Boronda Meadow School, printmaking and recreating mural art project.
Bioluminescent Jellies - Alisal High School Engineering Academy, mentoring the Harden Middle School special education students, designed and created jellies from plastic bottles.

Hip Hop Music Workshop MC LARS, our 2014 artist-in-residence, conducted hip hop music workshop with the Marina Teen Center students, performing an original song. Performance: First Night Monterey 2014

Greenfield Community Cultural Arts Center - Aztec Dance Classes, Visual Arts Classes. Campers worked with animation techniques and made videos to show what they learned about oceans and watersheds in our SeaChanges program. Click on the video link to see some of the videos made by the campers.


Castroville Mural Project
In Castroville, we transformed a local parks building into a beautiful work of art! Renowned muralist Guillermo "Yermo" Aranda worked with Castroville youth to place images reflecting old myths and legends, juxtaposed against contemporary images, making a full circle to the present and the future of our young people through their heritage. Project funding provided by Driscoll's.


Support ArtWorks!

First Night ArtWorks! is made possible by the following organizations and foundations:

Arts Council for Monterey County
The California Arts Council
James Irvine Foundation
Target Stores
National Endowment for the Arts
Nancy Buck Ransom Foundation
Harden Foundation
Monterey Peninsula Foundation- AT&T Charities
the Robert and Virginia Stanton Endowment Fund of the Community Foundation for Monterey County
First Five Monterey County

You can help bring these outreach programs to underserved communities!

Using our secure PayPal link

If you enjoy our annual celebration of the arts, why not consider becoming a Friend? Your tax-deductible gift to First Night® Monterey will have a lasting impact on our community. Call us and find out how you, your company or your service group can sponsor a venue!

Greenfield Harvest Festival: October 20, 2013 A FREE community event featuring six bands, seven dance troupes, a community parade, a 1K/5K run, eight art activities for children and their families, pony rides, a petting zoo and a pumpkin patch, showcasing the many cultures of Monterey County.Watch the video below!


Click Play and Full Screen to watch a great video of highlights and community leader comments from the Greenfield Harvest Festival produced by First Night in October. It was a day for the community to come together to celebrate all our cultures through the arts, supported by a grant from The James Irvine Foundation. Participants enjoyed a community parade, art activities, food and vendor booths, with bands and dance on three stages! Read more about this year's event.

These activities are supported, in part, with funds provided by the Western States Arts Federation (WESTAF), the California Arts Council, and the National Endowment for the Arts and a grant from the Robert and Virginia Stanton Endowment Fund of the Community Foundation for Monterey County. SeaChanges Outreach Workshops were made possible with funding by the Community Foundation of Monterey County with additional funding by: Westaf, Nancy Buck Ransom Foundation, Pebble Beach Foundation, CA Arts Council, Monterey Peninsula Foundation with funding from the AT&T Charities, and Harden Foundation



In 2010, First Night ArtWorks! introduced a fee-based Summer Art Day Camp at the Archer Park Community Center, and followed up with a Fall Break Art Camp, where drawing, painting, sculpture, photography, puppetry, mixed media, printmaking and performance art happened! FNM Staff are professional artists and teachers and our goal is to nurture creativity and enhance art skills in a non-competitive, safe, fun environment. Each Friday we have a "performance or gallery exhibit" of the work completed during the past week. Some projects included:

  • Learning the "ten key words" of drawing!
  • Puppets - Large Walkable Moving Puppets, using recycled materials.
  • Introduced American artists to kids while offering hands-on art experiences in the styles of Great American Masters!

If you are interested in the Summer Art Day Camp or the Fall Break Art Camp for school children, see more details here. Registration forms are online and fees may be paid by credit/debit card or by PayPal.


FNM’s Art Works! presents year-round, free arts workshops to introduce the visual and performing arts to children and adults throughout Monterey County and makes their work an integral part of the region’s largest New Year’s arts celebration. These workshops encourage an active involvement in and love of the arts. Young people and their families directly participate in hands-on workshops conducted by artists/educators in the months leading up to First Night. Often, these workshops offer important enrichment programs for community organizations with whom we partner to offer the workshops. The creative workshops culminate in exhibits and/or performances that become part of the First Night Celebration and are exhibited in other public venues throughout the region, such as the Monterey Peninsula Airport Gallery, Sunset Center, The National Steinbeck Center and Mission Cultural Center for Latino Arts in San Francisco. These exhibits give voice to the viewpoints and philosophies of all our residents and illuminate the commonality of our world views.

Collaboration is woven into our philosophy of engaging both the artistic community and the greater community, bringing them together to enrich lives and promote understanding. We collaborate with approximately 50 artists, more than 20 schools and community and arts organizations, and hundreds of volunteers in order to be able to present our workshops and the Celebration. We collaborate with business partners such as MST to provide free transportation and with Del Monte Shopping Center to offer free parking and shuttles to our audience on December 31st, and with CSU Monterey Bay for design work for each year’s fresh new look. We also rely on many sponsors and donors in our community to be able to present these workshops and the celebration year after year.

The ArtWorks! Outreach Program is a wonderful example of our success


See all of our 2013/14 sponsors

We are especially grateful to all of the donors and sponsors who so generously contributed to our success:
Arts Council for Monterey County, The California Arts Council, James Irvine Foundation, Target Stores, WESTAF, National Endowment for the Arts, Nancy Buck Ransom Foundation, Harden Foundation, Monterey Peninsula Foundation- AT&T Charities, the Robert and Virginia Stanton Endowment Fund of the Community Foundation for Monterey County, First Five Monterey County, Driscoll's.

Thank you!

To become a sponsor or outreach partner, call the First Night Office at 831 373-4478.

To become an Artist/Instructor, please email: info[at]firstnightmonterey[dot]org


Help us in our mission to bring the arts to underserved communities in Monterey County. First Night Monterey is a 503(c)(3) organization and your donations are fully tax-deductible. Through December 31, your donation matched!

Contact Us

First Night Monterey

Office: 542 Archer Street, Monterey, CA
Mail: P.O. Box 185, Monterey, CA 93942
Phone: 831.373.4778
Fax: 831.642.9860
email: info[at]firstnightmonterey[dot]org

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      © First Night Monterey 2014