The Cincinnati Chamber Orchestra showcases music not commonly performed by large symphony orchestras, so each show is an uncommon musical experience. During Spring 2, the delicately constructed harmonies of Arnold Schoenberg and George Gershwin (two works each) float across Corbett Auditorium and into ears to tickle auditory nerves like pixies riding tiny ponies on eardrums. Two of the four pieces were inspired by literature. Schoenberg’s Transfigured Night was inspired by a Richard Dehmel poem about a shocking confession that affects two lovers, while Gershwin's Porgy and Bess Suite is inspired by DuBose Heyward’s racially charged 1925 novel about the inhabitants of the semi-fictional Catfish Row. Schoenberg's Five Pieces for Orchestra, op. 16, is an unsettling work that balances Gershwin's famous Rhapsody in Blue, which is performed by acclaimed solo pianist Michael Chertock.
Peaslee’s Child Development Center educates 47 children ages 6 weeks to 5 years from low-income families, preparing them for kindergarten with literacy training, art and music classes, and a gardening space. The Child Development Center's naptime infant room is currently equipped with drop-side cribs, so the organization would like to replace the unsafe cribs with five new cribs that meet newly released safety standards.
Streetvibes newspaper distributors buy the paper for 25 cents per copy and sell it for $1 donations. Approximately 50 distributors sell more than 3,500 issues every two weeks. Since they work in all types of weather conditions, distributors require a protective place to store the papers, and easily identifiable vests to keep them warm while improving their image, credibility, and ultimately, sales. GCCH would like to outfit Streetvibes distributors with bags and new XXL vests that will be large enough to wear over winter coats.
The American Heart Association unleashes teams of up to five foragers through Madeira during a race composed of physical challenges, minigames, and a smartphone-based scavenger hunt. Wily racers ages 9 and older rush from place to place, earning points for solving puzzles and playing madcap team-based games in the style of Minute to Win It. At each destination, people scan codes with their smartphone or their infrared eyes before hurrying off through the urban landscape and jovially jostling with other teams for first place. Following the race, families and friends dance to disco-inspired beats in celebration of the cause. A free blood-pressure screening and CPR training educates racers on lessening cardiovascular risks by employing simple habits before prizes such as a $250 Visa gift card, a pair of women's Prada sunglasses, and a Mini Cooper weekend vehicle-rental package are awarded. Steaming mugs of coffee, hot chocolate, and hot apple cider keeps hands as warm as a furnace's bed sheets, and hot, fresh pizza rebuilds racers' strength. Each team requires at least one smartphone, and guests are encouraged to don spirit wear and costumes.
CGC has planted more than 45 gardens across Cincinnati in the past 30 years, and the gardens' leafy fruit have reached more than 2,000 community members. Driven by its community base, the neighborhood-gardens program furnishes flourishing garden beds with volunteers, water tanks, tools, and seeds. However, the gardens are commonly plagued with poor city soil, clogged with rubble and stripped of nutrients. CGC would like to infuse a community garden with 10 garden plots' worth of fresh, nutrient-rich soil, creating a fertile infrastructure that will support plantings for generations.
InReturn’s life-skills classes include a weekly reading class, where production associates read new fiction and nonfiction books aloud to one another, helping improve their literacy skills as they stay current on world events. The production associates also learn social skills from the stories that can be applied to their daily lives. InReturn hopes to purchase new books so each production associate can have their own copy for continued reading and learning.