Arts & Culture

Arts and culture

The George Eastman Museum has received a grant of nearly a half-million dollars from the state to continue its ongoing restoration work.

The grant of nearly $469,000 comes from the NYS Office of Parks, Recreation and Historic Preservation via the Finger Lakes Regional Economic Development Council.

The money will be used to address urgently needed repair and restoration of 68 windows in the historic mansion. The windows are original to the house and were installed between 1903 and 1905.


This isn’t the traditional yoga class you’re thinking of. There’s no soft music or candles. In fact, there are no walls or ceilings.

We're outside in Corbett’s Glen Park in Penfield, for the first HikYoga class of the year.

Started by Nicole Kazimer in August of 2015, HikYoga classes take place at a variety of area parks, even in the winter. 

During the course of each hike, they try to stop at least 3 times, venturing off the trails to do a bit of guided yoga.

Kazimer says bringing the practice outside of a studio, helps people open up a bit.


A piece of Rochester's food history is part of  Monday's Rose Parade broadcast from California.

Ragu, which got its start in this area, will have its first-ever float in the parade from Pasadena.  The sauce company will pay tribute to its Italian founders, with a float called " Simmered in Tradition."

It's part of the company's 80th anniversary celebration. Ragu began in Rochester where Assunta and Giovanni Cantisano began selling their homemade pasta sauce from ingredients they picked from their backyard garden.

University of Rochester student and Aleppo native Iyad Sayed Issa says he doesn't talk about politics or religion.

He says he doesn't even talk about the war when he speaks with friends and relatives back home.

Sayed Issa describes what has happened in his hometown as dejecting...

"Everything that's going on there for the past six years, five now, going on six. It's just sad. That's all I feel, my basic reaction is sadness," he said.

Sayed Issa is sophomore at the University of Rochester, studying biochemistry.

The Susan B. Anthony Museum & House in Rochester has received a $75,000 grant for VoteTilla, a week-long navigational celebration which will take place along the Erie Canal from July 16-22, 2017.

The money comes from the New York State Regional Economic Development Council.

VoteTilla is in honor of the New York state women’s suffrage centennial and is a reminder of the work and cooperation required to secure the vote for women.

VoteTilla is a partnership of several organizations and government agencies.

Two University of Rochester graduates have committed to a $5 million donation to support performing arts programming and provide seed funding for the proposed construction of a new theater on the River Campus.

The donation comes from Edgar Smith and Lusette (Andy) Smith. The Smiths, along with University Trustee Thomas Sloan and Linda Sloan are helping lead the effort for the proposed theater.

Officials say there is a shortage of performance and rehearsal  space on the River Campus and the proposed studio theater would help fill that need.

New York State Parks, Recreation & Historic Preservation

A Rochester project has been named as one of five recipients statewide of the New York State Historic Preservation Award.

Eastman Gardens, the former Eastman Dental Dispensary on East Main Street, won one of the awards which are given to honor excellence in the protection and rejuvenation of New York’s Historic Landmarks.

The $20 million project at 800 East Main St. turned the century old former dental clinic into a housing complex for seniors.

After just over a year in the job, the Maureen “Mo” Duggan has announced she will retire as executive director of the Community Design Center of Rochester. She will retire at the end of the year.

CDC Rochester is a non-profit advocate for planning and design, promoting healthy, sustainable communities.

Duggan took the job last year after co-founder Joni Monroe retired.

Duggan says she is looking forward to spending time with her family and traveling.

Fred SanFilipo / WXXI News

A well-known drummer from the Rochester area is among this year’s Grammy nominees. 

Steve Gadd is recognized as one of the top drummers in the world, and one of his latest efforts has just received a Grammy nomination for his album ‘Way Back Home: Live from Rochester,’ which includes music from Gadd’s 2015 appearance at the Xerox Rochester International Jazz Festival.

A top official with the Rochester Philharmonic is optimistic about the orchestra's financial future. Ralph Craviso is President and CEO of the RPO, and he says while they still need some time to eliminate the long-term deficit, they are on solid financial ground now in terms of dealing with immediate expenses.

“The essence of it is, we know what our deficits are, so we have essentially jump-started our fundraising efforts and created a one-time special  fund, to which we’ve gone to specific donors in order to make up the gap so that we can have a balanced budget.”