Weekend Celebration at Sense of Wonder

Creating a papier mache construction at Sense of Wonder. are Shannon Levesque (back left) and Samantha Cassidy, Kiric Hallahan (front left), with counselor Stephanie Thibert. — File photo by Pam Benjamin

There is a long list of appropriate descriptions you could use to introduce Vineyard Haven’s multi-talented Pam Benjamin: artist, teacher, dancer, sailor, environmentalist, and founder of the Sense of Wonder Creations. She excels at each.

Sense of Wonder, beginning it’s 20th year, is a nonprofit organization providing children with a summer program, art classes during the school year, and projects in collaboration with the Island schools, the community and global organizations. Its website explains: “It is an organization with a dedicated curriculum that recognizes the inherent talent, beauty, inspiration,and value of young people and wants to encourage them to express it in his/her own way.”

Reflecting on beginning her 20th year, Ms. Benjamin says, “I had hopes and dreams to do something like this, but I didn’t know what to expect. It certainly has grown and flourished. I love it so much I hope it goes on for another 20 years.”

This weekend the public is invited to the annual Sense of Wonder celebration. On Saturday, June 12, from 1 to 5 pm, at the Benjamin home at 23 Grove Avenue, Vineyard Haven, there is a student art show and sale — drawings, paintings, clay, sculptures, and papier mache constructions. Also on display for the first time, four panels of the new 78-feet long mural painted by the older students of Sense of Wonder that will eventually be installed at Veteran’s Memorial Park in Vineyard Haven.

On Sunday, June 13, from 3 to 6 pm, there will be a celebration with music, entertainment, food, games, face painting, performer Martina Fajkusova, a flame juggler from Czechoslovakia, surprise guests and art projects including pottery wheel demonstrations, during which children can make a clay pot to take home. All donations will be contributed to a global organization dedicated to feeding hungry children.

Sense of Wonder Summer Camp, June 28 to August 13, for children 7–12 years old, Monday–Friday, 9 am –1 pm. $250 per week. 508-693-3142.