Jason Bateman, Julie Bowen, Lisa Kudrow and Adam Scott were among the many stars who stepped out with their families to spend a sunny afternoon at the 14th annual P.S. Arts’ Express Yourself event on Sunday.
Santa Monica’s Barker Hangar was transformed into a large creative arts fair that embodied the mission of P.S. Arts, a nonprofit devoted to improving children’s lives by restoring art programs in public schools and their communities. The organization not only helps develop art curricula in schools but also recruits and trains art teachers. While guests mingled and munched on mini burgers, hot dogs and Dylan’s Candy Bar sweets, children – and some parents – got crafty in the art booths where they decorated their own tote bags, piggy banks and paper lanterns, among other activities.
The convergence of family fun and supporting a valuable initiative for public education has brought actor Mark Feuerstein of Royal Pains back to the event with his wife and children year after year. “[P.S. Arts] has the greatest event of the year for my family. Not only do we have two hours where the kids are occupied in the greatest possible way, but it’s a great community because it attracts people who want to give back and who have a heart. The event is the coming together of both parents and kids for whom expressing yourself is truly important,” Feuerstein told The Hollywood Reporter.
For a number of the famous attendees, including Kristin Davis, their involvement and support for P.S. Arts stem from their own childhood experiences with art programs in their schools and communities. “I know, for myself, I was a horrible student. The only thing that interested me was the theater program, obviously, but also the arts and crafts. So I know there’s so many kids where that’s the way to reach them,” said the actress, who co-hosted the event.
Stylist George Kotsiopoulos, who described the annual event as “the Vanity Fair party” for kids, sees art as a vital component to their education. “You just can’t go wrong in art class. It’s just one of those classes that fosters learning for other areas as well. I think it’s really, really important because I think it gives kids the opportunity to open their minds [and] expand their horizons,” said Kotsiopoulos, who was also one of the co-hosts.
Though Community star Joel McHale joked that he attended for the “free food,” he believes that the high-profile event can help draw attention to the necessity of art programming in public education. Citing the issue of art classes usually being eliminated first from schools during budget cuts, McHale added, “I hope this [event] is a big, loud, flashy way to tell people [to] keep supporting the arts.”