CSMA Arts for All Marathon

Raising funds for arts education and scholarships

A fundraising campaign for Community School of Music and Arts
The Arts for All Marathon is our annual arts extravaganza and fundraising event that creates new opportunities for all aspiring artists in our community.

For two exciting weeks of creative exchange in November, the gamut of community artists, arts patrons and enthusiasts will devote or “get back to” their artistic callings on behalf of the Community School of Music and Arts and its charitable mission: to keep local arts education accessible to anyone and everyone. 

Participants will be organizing benefit events, dedicating independent creative projects to our campaign, contributing to our online auction, exhibiting in our gallery, and generating support here on GiveGab. Marathon activities will be taking place from November 6-23 and our campaign here will continue through December 7.

Marathon artists' passionate efforts will help provide scholarships to everyone with a desire to learn and create in CSMA's classes and studio spaces in downtown Ithaca, New York. "Every year, we get to witness creative activity and unique collaborations among artists that would not happen if the fundraiser didn’t take place," says Robin Tropper-Herbel, the Executive Director of CSMA. "Making arts education accessible to everyone is our mission. That's why this is so important.” 

Join us in proudly supporting our Marathon artists' dedicated work! Please donate in their honor or sign on now to help champion our campaign here on GiveGab.

“CSMA has been a mainstay for three generations of my family for music, dance and art lessons, plays, concerts, and as a wonderful gallery space and venue,” says Rebecca Godin, visual artist and longtime Marathon participant.

The Marathon provides artists of all ages, disciplines and levels of involvement – from professionals to new Marathoners, as well as “lapsed” artists – the impetus to refocus and commit to their work. 

CSMA staff member Shayna Grajo has not performed dance publicly since recitals years ago, yet for the Marathon she will be joining performing artist Mandy Caughey, a 2012 Marathon participant, in two shows featuring the Japanese modern dance butoh on Nov. 13 and 14.  Others have organized Marathon events and fundraising efforts year after year, such as 89-year-old Gertrude Vrabel. 

Vrabel taught music, recorder and German classes at CSMA for “52 happy years.”  Her students spanned multiple generations, including those who continue as faculty at CSMA today, such as Alejandro Bernard-Papachryssanthou, a piano instructor who will also perform in a Marathon event. 

“Yes, how time slipped by since 1956 when I met Mrs. Eunice Weber, the founder of CSMA," wrote Vrabel recently. “I learned about her former life coming from a poor family, her love for music and her dream: a community school for Ithaca where everyone could afford to learn to play an instrument and experience the arts. The school holds true to Mrs. Weber’s dream.”

From what began in 1960 as a living room “music kindergarten,” our current downtown arts center continually sees the merging of community members and budding arts projects. Greetings and chatter among passers-by evolve to finished bodies of work as poets, photographers, composers and others come together in CSMA’s studios and spaces for rehearsals, performances and exhibitions. The Marathon is a snapshot of these multi-generational, interdisciplinary collaborations.

Since its first year in 2008, the Marathon has raised over $120,000 to support this initiative. We hope you'll help us achieve our GiveGab campaign goal of $2,500 during this year's Arts for All Marathon! CSMA is a 501 (c)3 non-profit organization, so all donations and contributions are fully tax deductible. Make art. Make an impact. Join us!

For more information about Marathon artists and events, getting involved, and supporting the Arts for All Marathon, visit
www.artsforallmarathon.org or contact the Community School of Music and Arts in Ithaca, New York at (607) 272-1474 or info@csma-ithaca.org.

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About the Organization

Community School of Music and Arts

The Community School of Music and Arts (CSMA) provides instruction in music, visual arts, dance, theatre and language arts to students of all ages, skill levels, and backgrounds.
Best known for our leading role in community based arts education and as a hub for artistic collaboration, CSMA also has long been a popular venue for performances, gallery shows, and events.

For nearly 60 years we've supported many facets of experiencing the arts, and making our programs accessible to everyone has always been at the heart of our mission. CSMA enriches the lives of nearly 800 students and 31,000 visitors to our spaces annually.

We thank you for your generosity!