American Mural Project at SCS

After a delay of almost 2 years, the SOAR/SCS Mural Project is at long last underway. In mid-September every child at Salisbury Central School, from pre-K through grade 8, created an individual contribution for the mural and worked on the background collage for the mural as well. Following the inspiration for the American Mural Project in Winsted, which celebrates the American worker, the SOAR/SCS mural will also celebrate the theme of work, as well as the wonderful 2o years of collaboration between SOAR and the school. All students contributed a drawing that symbolizes or depicts their hopes, dreams and aspirations for their future work lives. Their black and white drawings will soon be turned into wallpaper by a company in Bantam, CT called twenty2. The mural will be installed, hopefully this winter, as a permanent installation from floor to ceiling along the hallway leading to the art and music rooms in the upper building. We thank the Ian Mactaggart Trust for making this project possible!


Here is a link to a YouTube video about how the children's drawings will get turned into wallpaper put together by the project lead and visiting artist from AMP:


Here is a link for registering for a tour of the American Mural Project in Winsted, a worthwhile trip:




Welcome to SOAR Enrichment and to our website, soarkids.org!  After a challenging and uncertain 2020-2021 school year that took SOAR fully remote, we are excited to be returning to some in-person afterschool workshops at Salisbury Central this fall.  We will offer a hybrid approach to programming come September, continuing to offer several of the high quality remote options we piloted last year along with many in-person classes, many that will be new as well as some old favorites.  Due to continuing Covid safety

guidelines, sadly we will not be offering a musical experience this fall but are hopeful

that we will be able to do so in the spring. Despite some disappointments, there is still

much to look forward to as we slowly begin to transition back to in-person SOAR over

the course of the coming 2021-2022 school year. We hope everyone will check out our

wonderful fall 2021 offerings.

There is also a lot to be grateful for as well.  The community’s longstanding support of SOAR allowed us to keep our doors open and remain a constant for SCS students during a very challenging Covid year. With your encouragement and support, we all saw that our mission to provide high quality enrichment programming to the students at Salisbury Central could not be derailed even by a worldwide pandemic. To all of you who donated to SOAR, awarded us generous grants, volunteered, served on committees, taught classes and sent encouraging feedback we say a heartfelt thank you.  We could not have done it without you!



Linda Sloane

SOAR Executive Director



After serving as Chair of the SOAR Board for many years and many years before that as a SOAR Board member, Keith Marks recently stepped down as our Board chair at the end of his term. We want to publicly thank him for serving in this capacity for so long. His commitment to SOAR has been unswerving and his desire to meet the needs of the students and families we serve has always been top of mind for him. He has long been an advocate for keeping SOAR affordable and making sure that money concerns never keep any student from participating in our afterschool workshops. He has always been supportive of new ideas for programming and ways to engage students. Quality always took precedence over financial concerns for him. Keith will remain on the Board for one final year as he finishes out his third term as a SOAR Board member. He will long be remembered for all he has given to SOAR and we suspect, that even when he leaves the Board next June, he will remain a confirmed SOAR fan for many years to come. Thank you, Keith!



Many of you already know Keavy Bedell, SOAR’s new Board chair as of July 1 st . She is the mother of twin boys who will be entering the 6 th grade at Salisbury Central this year and she and her boys have been long time supporters of SOAR since their early years at SCS. She joined the SOAR Board in 2019 and quickly got involved. When it came time to find a replacement for Keith, she was the logical choice for this position given her longstanding interest and support for SOAR, her deep ties to the community and her outstanding leadership skills. Please join us in welcoming Keavy into this role. Already she is making her mark with her inclusive, friendly and positive approach to the job. Welcome, Keavy!


SOAR is honored and pleased to have received yet another grant from the Northwest Connecticut Community Foundation in Torrington to help support programming this fall. The Foundation was a lifeline for so many non-profits during the pandemic and made a profound difference for all of us who were awarded much-needed funds. They awarded us two other grants during the 2020-2021 school year. Their support was key to our successfully making it through that challenging and uncertain year. It is once again our pleasure to acknowledge this year’s Northwest Connecticut Community Foundation grant made possible by the Khurshed Bhumgara Fund, a fund of the Foundation and The Echo Valley Foundation Fund, a donor- advised fund established at the Foundation. The Echo Valley Foundation Fund was the sole funder of the grant we received to support remote programming last winter and spring so we remain especially grateful to this fund for their longstanding support of SOAR.