As part of HYPE's mission to help young professionals become better engaged in community life and become ambassadors for the Hartford Region, the Civic Engagement Committee
creates and organizes opportunities for members to engage in civics related programming, both locally and nationally, around topics of history, politics, and community matters impacting young professionals. The Civic Connects blog series focuses on interviewing professionals organizing annual events that bring people together in the City and impact the community. For the July edition, HYPEster and Civic Engagement Committee Member David Seymour interviewed Kate McOmber, Vice President of Communications & Donor Relations at the Greater Hartford Arts Council
, the managing organization for Summer in the City
Tell us about your event?
Summer in the City is an incredible program spanning from June through September. The program highlights the diverse arts and cultural events throughout the community. Summer in the City kicked off with the Hartford Puerto Rican Parade & Festival del Coquí and will conclude with the Hartford Capital City PrideFest, to include a total of 9 core festivals. Each event is free to attend and open to all ages, and has exciting musical and cultural performances, as well as delicious food and local vendors. The next event is Taste of the Caribbean + Jerk Fest, which runs from 1pm through 11pm on August 4th.
How long have you been involved and what is your role?
Summer in the City is in its second year, thanks to the generous support of United Technologies, and the partnership of the City of Hartford. Mayor Bronin got the program started as a way to help ensure the continuation of the amazing arts and cultural festivals in our community. The Arts Council was tapped to create and manage the program that you see today. The fun and artistic side is evident at SummerInHartford.com, where all events are highlighted and detailed further.
How do you engage the Hartford Community?
One of the primary goals of the program is to engage the Hartford community, so marketing plays a key role in notifying the public from billboards to advertising through publications like Hartford News, CT Now and Northend Agents to radio to extensive social media. Each event certainly has its own base and audience from the community, but marketing engages the greater public.
If budget were not an issue, what is the one thing you’d like to add to this event?
There’s never a shortage of arts and cultural events happening in our community and we’d love to support each and every one.
In what ways are you looking to further grow this event, and how can someone get more involved?
Go to the events, bring your friends and families. Tell everyone you know about Summer in the City and get out to enjoy the food, music and culture taking place right here. And, if you’d like, volunteer with some of these events. Lend a helping hand and get to know the amazing people who are making these events happen
Visit the Greater Hartford Arts Council’s website for even more volunteer opportunities in the arts, like the Business Volunteers for the Arts program. You can also find a calendar of arts and cultural events that take place throughout the year!