Appleton to distribute free art kits to local youth


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Ocala, Florida — The Appleton Museum of Art, College of Central Florida, is preparing free art supply kits for local youth.

During the temporary closure of the Appleton due to COVID-19, the museum team continued providing access to the arts, particularly for local children. Over the past few months, more than 500 free art kits were distributed to students through the Marion County Public School system, as well as Boys & Girl Club of Marion County and PACE Center for Girls. Kimberly Vollmer-Smith, Special Projects Coordinator at PACE says the art kits will provide the girls at PACE with, “additional resources to engage and express their creativity while reaching personal academic and counseling goals through our innovative learning environment.”

The Appleton also worked with Jason Halstead, executive director for Brother’s Keeper, to distribute art kits to children in two additional locations: Saving Mercy emergency shelter and Brother’s Keeper outreach ministry. Halstead said, “Children served by these programs are impoverished. These children are often in need of activities that promote learning and creative expression. The art kits will put supplies in the hands of children who cannot otherwise afford them and provides opportunities for fun, development, and artistic exploration.”

A generous grant from Art Bridges Foundation has allowed the museum to continue this initiative with 2,000 more free art kits. Art kits include a watercolor set, construction paper pad, glue, glue stick, pencil, pencil sharpener, ruler, string, craft stick, paper bag, crayons, scissors, and a stamped Appleton postcard to mail to a family member or friend. Appleton staff members have assembled the first round and invite local youth and parents to stop by and pick up these free art supplies that can be used for limitless activities.

Art kits will be handed out drive-in style. The Appleton asks that you pull up your vehicle to the distribution table during any of the three designated dates, times and locations below. The Appleton team will be practicing safety and sanitation guidelines recommended by the CDC. Art kits are available on a first-come, first-served basis.

July 25, 10:30 a.m.-noon

Location: Appleton Museum of Art

4333 E. Silver Springs Blvd.

 Aug. 1, 10:30 a.m.-noon

Location: CF Ocala Campus in front of Ewers Century Center

3001 SW College Rd.

Aug. 8, 10:30 a.m.-noon

Location: CF Hampton Center

1501 W. Silver Springs Blvd.

Art supplies can be used in tandem with the Appleton’s Teaching Tuesday video series, featuring art projects that can be done from home. Videos can be found on the Appleton’s Facebook page, YouTube channel, or by visiting

For questions about art kit distribution, email This project has been generously funded by Art Bridges Foundation.

A campus of the College of Central Florida, the Appleton Museum of Art is located at 4333 E. Silver Springs Blvd., Ocala, east of downtown on SR 40 (exit 352 east off I-75 or exit 268 west off I-95). Parking is free. For more information, call 352-291-4455 or visit

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