Every mother knows how difficult it can be to find something engaging and fun to do with their children that doesn’t involve a screen but the Bonifas made that search a little easier in January with the Dino Date Night events.

Mothers and sons enjoy an evening and afternoon of fun with at the Bonifas as they created fossils, went on archeological digs, created art and played dinosaur games.

There was pizza for the k-6 children on Friday night and dinosaur inspired snacks for the toddlers on Saturday afternoon. 


These pictures are day 1 (1/20/19) and day 2 (1/21) of my Memory boxes. Day I realized that it needed research. Day 2 shows the results it now had the "memories" it needs. On to day 3.


My project is Memory boxes and this is my first one. Started looking at all the spoons, needed research. This is going to talk a few more days for background. looking forward to doing more. 


Of my 100 day project. Plugging along! 


My first two blocks on my journey to completing Dear Jane. About 5.5” square. One pieced, one foundation pieced.


Maggie Miller's Day 2 post card.


Maggie Miller's first day post card


1-20-19 Day 1 Beginning Again

Sometimes life just happens. The best laid plans, the dreamiest of dreams, the greatest hopes for the future all have a way of taking their own course. At times we are left having to make decisions that restructure our lives, or in some cases, cause us to give up. Neither is an easy decision and neither happens overnight.

When everything about the daily routine of life seems to be a chore, and you realize that you are tired of your own company, it is time for a change.

My life has changed course over the last several years. More recently, I have been “nesting,” building my very own cocoon of comfort and safety.  Gradually however,  I have been finding that just that is not enough. I have begun to recognize that I need to reach out and become a part of daily life once again. While I could choose to continue to live a quiet hermit-like existence, safe from the hurts and trials of relationships, I find I am missing out on that important interaction with humanity. Slowly, I have been opening myself to new experiences, and pushing myself at times to do the uncomfortable in an attempt to recognize the path ahead.

Even through the most frigid and seemingly desolate of winters, we always know that spring will come. My plan is to find spring once again in my life. In this 100DayProject I plan to focus on rebirth. I want to be re-inspired, and learn to recognize joy in each and every day.

I will call my project…Phoenix Rising.

The rest of the blog thus far can be found at:  100daysphoenix.home.blog


Photo 1- my workspace, photo 2 first attempt at designing mandalas, photo 3 -happy dance - first mandala completed!

Had my subject, workspace, rules and coffee ready before the first step today at 5 something AM. Kind of scary at first but once I got the pencil doing it's work, things got better. Learned a lot just by the attempt: be willing to let go of sense of perfection, did not have all materials needed at the ready like I thought, accuracy in designing is important, one step leads to another, and don't judge yourself--just work and see what happens! Changed one of my rules: Instead of 1/2 hour working, it is now 1/2 working and 1/2 hour redrawing and coloring. Can't wait for tomorrow to add to this one.

No BS, No BFA, Yet! is a biennial exhibit that showcases the work of seniors at Northern Michigan University’s College of Art and Design, giving the artists a platform for their work off campus and in a gallery. The fourth installment opened January 10 at the Bonifas Powers Gallery.

The public can expect beautiful, diverse, and out-of-the-box artworks that challenge and surprise as well as stir discussion. On January 24 from 7 p.m. - 9 p.m., you have the chance to meet with the artists and discuss their work at the reception that will be held at the Bonifas Arts Center. 

No BS, No BFA, Yet! runs January 10 - February 20 in the Alice Powers Gallery. 

Art changes the world. Art helps share experiences, change opinions, instill values, and interpret experiences. It expresses and records our memories. We want to inspire and engage the very best of each and every person who crosses our doorstep or participates in one of our programs. Art is what most expresses our humanity. We know that art can be a vehicle to bring our community together, enhance our connections with each other and help us to communicate our many points of view. 

The Bonifas is dedicated to serving our community and making it the best it can be. To achieve that goal we need to know more. Please participate in the short survey at surveymonkey.com. Your answers will help us plan classes, exhibits, and events that engage people and encourage and develop artists. 

I invite you to join us for one of the Bonifas’ new 2019 classes, exhibits, or events. We’re adding several family-friendly events to the calendar – like Mother-Son Dino Date Night and Family Date Nights. We’re also celebrating Yooper culture with Flannel Fest on February 23. Please note the date change and location of the annual Benefit for the Bonifas which will be held on March 16 at the arts center. 

Our classes, designed for people at all skill levels, include learning to alter clothes to fit you better, culinary skills for children, and yoga, which is taking on a new tone—try it out this year! Learn to shoot great natural light portraits (or selfies) with your smartphone or try scratchboard art. There are so many ways you can express yourself! 

This winter, use Bonifas art exhibits to relax and absorb new experiences. Be inspired by new and vibrant artwork from Northern Michigan University students. Be delighted by the art of hundreds of area children. Engage a new perspective from several professional U.P. artists in our April exhibit. We offer insights to adults and promise to have art scavenger hunts for all ages. 

Check your calendars and be sure to include the Bonifas in your winter plans this year. Engage with art – let it enhance and inspire your life! 

Be well, Sue 

Pasqua Warsler retires from the Bonifas after years as the art center's gallery and executive director.
Pasqua Warsler retires from the Bonifas after years as the art center's gallery and executive director.

Dear Bonifas Members, Sponsors, and Collaborators,

After 26 years of inspiring fun, cherished relationships, and hard work, I will be retiring from the Bonifas Arts Center at the end of December. This community arts center has fluxed and morphed, just as I have over those years and as the center will continue to do so with every new leader's unique vision.

What you can still expect: revitalized classes and events that welcome more and more of our local community members to participate and visit, and in doing so, continue to support the arts center. Your participation and input remain vital to the health of your Bonifas Arts Center. Don't miss the survey, on page 15 and 16 of the ArtNews or online at bonifasarts.org. Your input is important in knowing how to serve you better.

We have an amazing 2019 gallery line-up so remember the gallery and the receptions are open to the public and our upcoming schedule includes something for everyone. Check out the listing at bonifasarts.org/gallery/powers-2019.

The gallery has grown to have a valuable, regional impact that strengthens not only the Bonifas Arts Center, but the arts throughout the Upper Peninsula. It is cherished by many.

I plan to continue working on regional projects that help pre-serve U.P. arts and culture and I look forward to all of what the Bonifas will offer. The Bonifas has been a wonderful place to work; stimulating and steady.

Thank you,

Are you interested in having a say in what happens to a local community pillar? The Bonifas Arts Center is currently looking for your opinions to help the Bonifas explore new options for programming and classes, to understand the needs of the community, and to better serve the area.


“People’s responses will help shape what we plan for our gallery, our classes, and events in the coming years,” Director Sue Roll expressed, “ Our mission is to ‘enhance and inspire the creative and cultural lives’ of our community. To do this, we need insight and opinions beyond our own experience so that we can offer more interesting and appealing programs.”

Even though creativity and creative expression are parts of our everyday lives, from the clothes we buy to the colors we choose to paint our walls, art is often seen as something that only a few talented people can aspire to do.

As a community art center, the Bonifas is working hard to dispel this myth and create a center that nurtures and fosters the arts for all people. The survey is one way that they can work together with the community to help create a vibrant, thriving art center for the Upper Peninsula.

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