By Patrick Gormley

The SAM Foundation’s education programs are matching the mercury and heating up this summer.

Programs at Fantastic Friends of WNY, The Valley Community Center and the Old First Ward Community Center have been ongoing and include showcasing new songs and instruments to their school aged populations.

SAMF is welcoming new teaching artist Brian Overdorf into the fold as he leads a week-long ukulele course at the Old First Ward Community Center. Overdorf is a South Buffalo staple who routinely performs in local bars and restaurants throughout the area.

In both 2018 and 2019, he embraced the opportunity to serve as a month long intern with the Haiku Aina Permaculture Initiative (HAPI) in Maui, Hawaii. HAPI Maui is a self-sustaining community focused on soil renewal, reforestation and human interaction with nature. It comprises both native Hawaiian people and mainland ex-pats.

Overdorf embraced the communal role the ukulele instrument played during his time at HAPI and its role in Hawaiian culture.

He will work with two separate groups of youth at the OFW Community Center for two hours a day during the week of Aug. 5.

The SAM Foundation looks forward to sharing images from all our programs as our teaching artists continue to work with audiences across Western New York.

Elmer Ploetz

Author Elmer Ploetz

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