Event to benefit Red Thread Studio

Published 10:50 pm Friday, September 11, 2009

To the Hampton Roads arts community, its members are like a family.

This weekend, some of those family members will be doing what families do — helping one of their own.

The Suffolk Museum is hosting a benefit for Angelia and Steve Armstrong, the owners of the Red Thread Studio, a downtown arts mainstay that was damaged in a fire Aug. 6.

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“It’s really a party showing our support of two people that have put a lot into the community,” Nancy Kinzinger, who works at the Suffolk Museum, said. “Since Angelia has had Red Thread here in Suffolk, she’s been a very active member of the art community here and done a lot of things for the community at large.”

Armstrong is an active member of Suffolk Downtown Arts, the Downtown Business Association and the Greater Suffolk Council. She also spearheaded the Suffolk First Saturdays effort, which has brought people downtown on the first Saturday of the month throughout the summer to listen to music and enjoy the arts venues and restaurants.

The benefit for the Armstrongs and Red Thread Studio will be held today from 5 to 7 p.m. Attendees will be able to enjoy refreshments, bid on items in a silent auction, enjoy live music and view the new exhibit at the museum, a quilt show titled “New Image, New Visions.”

“We have a lot of items for the silent auction,” Kinzinger said. “We have a huge variety — everything from car washes to art.”

The arts community from Williamsburg to North Carolina has chipped in with donations for the food and drinks, as well as the silent auction items, Kinzinger said.

“The community has been very supportive,” she said.

Music will be provided by the Renaissance School Violin Ensemble, and Mark Fitzgerald and Friends.

People who can’t make it to the benefit can help by making a cash contribution or purchasing food items at the Suffolk Downtown Arts booth at Taste of Suffolk, which will go toward the Armstrongs as well, Kinzinger said.

“Even if (attendees) don’t want to buy anything, that’s fine,” Kinzinger said. “It’s about being supportive for regular people who have put a lot into the local downtown scene.”

For more information, call 514-7284. Donations should be made to Suffolk Downtown Arts, 118 Bosley Ave., Suffolk, VA 23434.