'Hot' Fundraiser Helps Underserved Kids Learn Glassblowing

Monday, June 4th 2012, 5:58 pm
By: News On 6

This story originally credited Janet Duvall for starting the kids glassblowing program five years ago. It was actually started by Sara Digdon. We apologize for the error.


There's now a unique way to help kids learn about the arts. A fundraiser this week will help raise money to teach underserved kids about the art of glass blowing.

Organizers say it teaches confidence and helps students learn to be a part of a team.

Harrison Morrow is 16 years old but already a seasoned glassblower.

"I'm not very good at drawing and sculpting type stuff, but glass art is a lot more technical," Harrison said.

He started at 12 years old with a beginner's lesson, then enrolled in a special program for kids at the Tulsa Glassblowing Studio.

"Glassblowing, in and of itself, is a team sport," said Janet Duvall of the Tulsa Glassblowing Studio.

Janet Duvall started the program five years ago. Last year nearly 380 kids took lessons at the studio.

She says glass art teaches kids to be flexible, confident, and builds their self esteem.

"We've got so many positive success stories, kids that maybe didn't talk at all and all of the sudden they'll talk to you day and night about glass," Duvall said. "Some of them come in and tell me they're dreaming about it, so it's a real exciting thing to know that we have that kind of impact on them."

This week Duvall is hosting the "Some Like it Hot" fundraiser. She's auctioning off glass art and bringing in nationally known artists from across the country to help raise money to fund scholarships for kids who are interested in the program.

"I started taking classes at TCC," said glassblowing instructor Natalie Legener. She says there's nothing better than watching the kids grow and mature throughout the course.

"It's fun to see them take it all in and understand it and make it their own, interpret it their own way," Legener said. "They have fun with it, it's fun to see them engage in something."

Harrison agrees. He says glass art has had a positive impact on his life and would encourage anyone, even if you don't think you'd be very good, to give it a try.

"I'd say it's really fun and a great way to spend your time," said glassblowing student Harrison Morrow.

That fundraiser is this Thursday night at The Campbell Hotel here in Tulsa. Call 918-582-4527 or visit their Facebook page for more information.