On Saturday, March 25, Kent Cultural Alliance (KCA) will hold its grand opening of the Vincent and Leslie Prince Raimond Cultural Center, a four-and-half-year $2.3 million renovation of the 18th-century building on Spring Avenue, across from the post office.
KCA Director John Schratwieser points out that the building is part of the 48-year legacy of the Kent County Arts Council and its decades of multiple arts endeavors under the directorship of founders Vince and Leslie Raimond.
Despite pandemic delays, rising costs of materials, and supply chain issues, the renovation is now complete and ready for art exhibits and “serve the residents of Kent County supporting and creating inclusive artistic and cultural experiences designed to connect communities through shared conversations.”
It’s an extraordinary facility designed to accommodate artists in residence, showcase art exhibits of all genres, hold live events, and educational community gatherings all in the open space of their main gallery. Resident artists have their own bedrooms and workspaces, a common kitchen and a common room on the second floor. Also notice in the video that Osprey Custom Carpenters retained the the 18th-century open ceiling beams. Chestertown’s history still resides in the structure.
The Grand Opening ribbon cutting with be at noon on Saturday, March 25. From 12 to 5pm Our Best Foot Forward, a celebration of Kent County’s Creative Community, will take place. At 7pm, a concert and dedication of the Raimond Center will be held at the Garfield Center.
The Kent County Poetry Festival will be held Saturday,April 1st and 2nd. Local Celebrity Poets will read Saturday, at 1 pm at KCA’s Raimond Center. The main event will be feature Patricia Spears Jones reading at 7 pm at Norman James Theater, Washington College. On Sunday, April 2 from 2-5 pm, at Robert Ortiz Studios, an Open Mic event will be held with presenters KCA, WAC Rose O’Neil Literary House The Bookplate, and Ortiz Studios. Tickets are $25; all funds will go to creating a permanent grant fund for independent artists living and working in Kent County. See their website for tickets.
Also, on April 15, Raimond Cultural Center will host the annual A & E District Arts Walk pop-up formerly held at Chesapeake Bank and Trust.
But here: Let’s let John will tell you all about it during the Spy tour.