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A special paint night to benefit Community Foundation of Carroll County

A special paint night to benefit Community Foundation of Carroll County
Jack and Beth Tevis and Ellen Finnerty are shown accepting the first Philanthropist of the Year awards from the Community Foundation of Carroll County. The Community Foundation's paint night fundraiser on Jan. 31 from 6-9 p.m. at VFW Post 467 in Westminster. (Courtesy photo)

The tree is a symbol of immense and enduring strength. Meaning can be found in its spreading branches of protection and the roots that hold it firmly in place.

Within the Community Foundation of Carroll County's logo, a single symbolic tree stands out. And that is why those who attend the Community Foundation of Carroll County's paint night fundraiser on Jan. 31 will be painting a tree.

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The paint night — to be held from 6-9 p.m. at VFW Post 467 in Westminster — will be led by artist Lyndi McNulty, owner of Gizmos Art.

Lindi McNulty was named a Philanthropist of the year by the Community Foundation of Carroll County in 2015. McNulty, owner of Gizmos Art, will be one of the artists at the Foundation's paint night fundraiser on Jan. 31 from 6-9 p.m. at VFW Post 467 in Westminster.
Lindi McNulty was named a Philanthropist of the year by the Community Foundation of Carroll County in 2015. McNulty, owner of Gizmos Art, will be one of the artists at the Foundation's paint night fundraiser on Jan. 31 from 6-9 p.m. at VFW Post 467 in Westminster. (DYLAN SLAGLE/STAFF PHOTO / Carroll County Times)

McNulty will be joined by a host of other accomplished art instructors, most of whom will donate their finished tree painting to the Community Foundation to be framed and used as their 2019 Philanthropist of the Year award.

"We've [presented] these awards in all sorts of art forms, but it's always a tree," said Audrey Cimino, executive director of the Community Foundation of Carroll County. "We've had wood carvings, sculptures and other fantastic [mediums] used. And, even though they are all the same subject matter, each painting will be an original."

Cimino said the tree's symbolism means a lot to them, with deep roots that spread out into the community as well as a presentation of immense beauty above ground. She spoke of how much the Foundation gives back to the community.

"Two years ago, we were asked to figure out how much money we have put into the community," she said. "I went back through our records for the past 25 years and was astonished to find that we have given away 50 million dollars! That's a lot of money going into our community and it goes to show you what can be done when people work together towards a goal."

Audrey Cimino, the executive director of the Community Foundation of Carroll County is recognized by Maryland Army National Guard Major General Linda Singh during a rededication ceremony at Ellsworth Cemetery May 26, 2018.
Audrey Cimino, the executive director of the Community Foundation of Carroll County is recognized by Maryland Army National Guard Major General Linda Singh during a rededication ceremony at Ellsworth Cemetery May 26, 2018. (Dylan Slagle / Carroll County Times)

McNulty agreed. She said one of the reasons she wanted to lead this paint night is because of all the Community Foundation does.

"The Community Foundation manages [295 charitable funds and scholarships] in our county," McNulty said. "They are one of the best things that has happened to this community and Audrey has done so much to make it happen. So many charities and scholarships exist because of them, and many are in memory those we want to remember, to keep their work alive."

The Community Foundation presented its first Philanthropist of the Year award in 2006. It is given in annually in five or six categories: Individual; Family; Business; Nonprofit; Youth; and sometimes Legacy.

McNulty said local artists Pam Zapperdino, Carolyn Seabolt, Sylvia Bellak, Candy Aaron and Alice Faber will help her with instruction for those who attend. Each instructor may either donate the paintings they do that night, or paint one for the Community Foundation afterward.

"Because Audrey said she wanted us to do a tree, Pam and I sat and went through a lot of ideas for trees," McNulty said. "We wanted one that would be striking and pretty, but also one that the average person could paint."

The design that will be painted during the Paint Night fundraiser is of a tree that looks like stained glass art. The paint night fundraiser is set for Jan. 31 from 6-9 p.m. at VFW Post 467 in Westminster.
The design that will be painted during the Paint Night fundraiser is of a tree that looks like stained glass art. The paint night fundraiser is set for Jan. 31 from 6-9 p.m. at VFW Post 467 in Westminster. (Courtesy photo)

The design they chose is of a tree that looks like stained glass art, and Cimino loved the classic design, perfect for their 25th anniversary award.

"This year is our 25th anniversary," she said. "We are doing a series of fundraisers — small and large — and this is our first, with a goal of raising money for the operating funds of the Foundation. Having a paint night will be fun, and it will help us as well. We did one over at Maggie's Restaurant a few years ago and it was so much fun. My daughter came, and we laughed all evening.

"It's a social event that's no pressure — just a fun and lovely thing for sisters, or mothers and daughters, even older children. For all."

The $40 per person charge for the paint night includes art instruction, supplies, lite fare and a complimentary glass of wine. Additional wine, beer, and soda will be available for purchase throughout the evening.

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The VFW is located at 519 Poole Road in Westminster.

For more information or to sign up, email sfielder@communityfoundationofcarrollcounty.org or call 410-876-5505 ext. 105.

The snow date is Feb. 7.

Brenda Meadows, executive director at The Shepherd's Staff, creates a painting at the second annual Paint Night Fundraiser at Maggie's Restaurant. This year's paint night fundraiser is set for Jan. 31 from 6-9 p.m. at VFW Post 467 in Westminster.
Brenda Meadows, executive director at The Shepherd's Staff, creates a painting at the second annual Paint Night Fundraiser at Maggie's Restaurant. This year's paint night fundraiser is set for Jan. 31 from 6-9 p.m. at VFW Post 467 in Westminster. (Courtesy photo)


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