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Community Spotlight: Manassas Center for the Arts


VF&N has been a longtime supporter of the arts in Manassas, Virginia

At Vanderpool, Frostick, & Nishanian, P.C., we value our community ties, and we believe that serving our community extends beyond our professional legal services. Community engagement is a priority, and our attorneys and staff are active in a variety of organizations, service groups, and nonprofits. In this weekly blog series, Community Spotlight, we are highlighting these organizations and the value they provide to our community! This week, we’re featuring the Center for the Arts at the Candy Factory where VF&N attorney Brett Callahan currently serves on the Board of Directors.

About the Manassas Center for the Arts

This mission of the Center for the Arts of Greater Manassas/ Prince William County is to enrich, entertain, and celebrate the community through performances, gallery exhibits, and arts education. To this end, the Center sponsors theatrical productions for children and adults, teaches art classes, promotes visual arts, and provides community outreach programs for local youth. Their location in the historic Candy Factory in Old Town Manassas houses an art gallery, classrooms and office space, and a theater in the round.

The Center for the Arts produces drama, visual arts, and dance programs and classes for all ages. The art gallery located on the first floor of the Candy Factory hosts rotating art exhibits featuring the work of local artists.

The Center for the Arts relies on the support of generous donations, sponsorships, and volunteers from the community. If you would like to learn more about their programs or how you can support the arts in the Greater Manassas/ Prince William County area, check out their website.

VF&N attorney Brett Callahan dedicates her time and leadership serving on the Board of Directors of the Center for the Arts. A musician herself, she says, “the Center provides so many great opportunities for kids and adults to engage with the arts in the community.” Previously, Kris Spitler had also served on the Center’s Board of Directors for ten years, serving as the Board’s President from 2010-2012.

About the Center’s Programs

Pied Piper Theatre: This children’s theatre program is in its 22nd year, putting on three performances per year while teaching kids all the skills needed to put on a dramatic or musical production both onstage and off. Students can learn technical skills like stage management, set design, lighting and sound, as well as performance skills.

Rooftop Productions: The Center’s adult theatre program is in its 10th year, providing a creative outlet for adults and fun for the whole community with traditional performances and interactive dinner theatre.

Prime Time Past Time Players: A theatre group for adults 55+  who put on performances and workshops for seniors incorporating theatre games, technical exercises, and storytelling.

Arts on the Go: The Center for the Arts has partnered with local sponsors including NOVEC, Micron, and SPARK, module designers Eric Vasey, DK Stewart, and Thomas Hannon, and academic consultants Nancy Pallo and Karen Moffitt to provide fully integrated STEAM (Science, Technology, Engineering, Arts and Math) education modules to local elementary and middle schools. These award-winning interactive exhibits allow students to understand science through hands-on, creative lessons and activities.

Zentangle: A veterans’ art program that provides a creative and therapeutic outlet for local veterans focused on the meditative power of the arts.

Summer camps and classes: Camps and classes include technical and performance training for theatre, arts across a wide variety of digital and physical media, and various social and performance dance styles. Classes are offered both at the Candy Factory and other locations around Prince William County.

Summer Sounds Concerts: Each year, the Center for the Arts, Micron Technology Foundation, the City of Manassas, and the Harris Pavilion offers a series of free concerts on Saturday evening throughout the summer at the Harris Pavilion in Old Town Manassas.

About the Candy Factory

The home of the Center for the Arts is the historic Candy Factory in Old Town Manassas. The building dates back to 1908 when the Hopkins Candy Company expanded into the facility; it was later sold to the Merchant family and used as a tire factory, warehouse, and retail space until the family donated the building to the City of Manassas for the Center’s use in 2002. Located across from the Southern Railway Depot, visitors of the Center can see the historic Manassas railway line through a plexiglass floor display in the Candy Factory. The Candy Factory’s open exhibit and performance spaces can also be rented for private events.