ArtsNow Patron Spotlight: Kimberly Young

Art audiences, supporters, and patrons are all vital to a healthy arts and culture sector. This new blog series will highlight some of the people who make the arts work in Summit County. (Have somebody you want to nominate for the spotlight? Reach out to

Art needs and deserves an audience and advocates. In our newest series, the ArtsNow Patron Spotlight, we’re putting the stories of our local arts patrons front and center. Today, we hear from Kimberly Young.

What is your earliest memory of the arts?

My earliest memory of the arts was as a little girl in Cleveland visiting the Cleveland Museum of Art. Each year, our school took a field trip to the various museums in University Circle.

What was your first introduction to the arts scene in Summit County?

My first introduction to the art scene in Summit County was when I attended my first event at the Akron Civic Theater. I can’t recall the specific show. However, any chance I get to see a show at this wonderful gem I jump at it!

How do the arts in Summit County impact your life?

The arts in Summit County has a great impact on my life. I have a 16-year-old daughter and a 19-year-old stepson. When they were little, we would take them to shows at the Magical Theater, Weathervane, and the Civic. We knew that exposure to the arts was vital to developing a well-rounded child. The arts allow children the opportunity to hone in on skills that can only be fully developed through such exposure. Even to this day, my daughter and I enjoy watching a show at one of the great theaters in the area. We also enjoy checking out other arts activities such as Crafty Mart, Akron Art Expo, checking out Summit Arts Space, the Akron Art Museum and so on.

What artist or arts organization in Summit County do you wish more people knew about?

Honestly, there are so many! Akron is full of such artistic talent. One person that comes to mind is April Couch of Totally Tangled Creations. April’s talent is out of this world! She does this amazing technique that is hard to pronounce but intricate and beautiful called Zentangle. She spends hours drawing the design on vases, bowls, wooden sculptures, furniture, etc. There is no replication here! Each piece is unique and made with hard work, determination, and love! I met April when my daughter started preschool. Her son Matthew was in my daughters class. The kids loved playing together so much, April agreed to let Kendell come over after school to play with Matthew. She also saw that we were, for lack of a better word, struggling to go to school and work – all while trying to manage aftercare for Kendell. She is such a great soul and puts out the most amazing positive vibes! Everyone should check her out! She is a talented artist who is good for your soul!

What is a “can’t miss” Summit County arts experience?

I don’t really have just one! I can’t miss any of the outdoor art activities in the summer! I love stopping by concerts at Lock 3 or Lock 4, ballet in the park at Hardesty or Glendale Cemetery and of course Porchrokr!! I am extremely fond of Porckrokr because it brings people to my favorite neighborhood and showcases how great the area is!