FastBreak Foundation Honors ArtStart

by Mark Remme
Web Editor

Cristy Brusoe
Web Editorial Assistant

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The FastBreak Foundation continued their celebration of Think Green month by honoring the efforts of the ArtStart organization on Friday night.

Throughout the month of April, the Foundation and Timberwolves organization is focusing on raising awareness for environmental causes and highlight eco-friendly efforts in the community. The goal is to recognize local individuals and organizations for their help in preserving and improving our environment.

Serving over 26,000 people each year, the ArtStart organization focuses on arts education environmental stewardship and cultural diversity. It promotes art-making with recycled materials through hosting classes, community festivals and partnerships with schools. It also operates a creative materials store that reuses over 50,000 pounds of scrap materials and discards.

ArtStart Program and Events Coordinator Cindy Smith said the organization was founded 25 years ago as way to educate children about the environment as well as develop a passion for the arts.

“[The thought was] if I teach kids the different cultural aspects of art…. They will learn the environmental part. We do environmental education and cultural and kind of blend it all together,” Smith said.

Timberwolves President Chris Wright was on hand to present Smith with a team autographed basketball.

ArtStart holds an EcoArts Fest each year on May 17 in St. Paul. They also host annual summer camps once school is out.

To learn more about the ArtStart and their programs, visit

In the past year, the Minnesota Timberwolves FastBreak Foundation and the Minnesota Lynx Foundation have combined to impact 2,028 organizations with $750,000 in-kind donations, 60,000 Tickets for Kids donations, 4,226 volunteer hours, 45 Heroes in the Making on-court presentations and fourteen $5,000 grants.

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