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YC marks International Day of Peace Sept. 21

YC marks International Day of Peace Sept. 21 with trio of community events 

Yavapai College is inviting the community to celebrate the 40th anniversary of the International Day of Peace Sept. 21 with three special events to remind us of the enduring pursuit to quash armed conflict.

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Three different arms of the college, the Visual Art Department, the Justice Institute and the Respect Campaign are steering the different aspects of the college and communitywide celebration.

First up on the celebration agenda is a talk by Varsha N., a peace lecturer, training consultant, wellness coach and attorney. She will share messages about peace and discuss how to create a harmonious life and community. A guest of the YC Respect Campaign and Justice Institute, is speaking at 1 p.m. Wednesday, Sept. 21, in Room 147 in the Library Building (B-19) on the Prescott Campus.

Later that day, at 5 p.m., YC students, faculty and college leadership are gathering outside the Prescott Campus Library for the unveiling by the YC Visual Art Department of a peace pole sculpture. The sculpture, which will be displayed permanently outside the library, was designed by prolific YC art student and metal sculptor Ron Miller and fabricated by Miller and fellow student John Barton. The sculpture is the result of a peace pole art competition sponsored by Rotary International. Miller’s peace pole design was the winner of a competition the art department organized last spring on behalf of the Prescott Frontier Rotary Club. 

Miller’s sculpture is unique in that a majority of the thousands of peace poles around the globe are “pretty plain,” angular and made of wood, he said. By contrast, Miller designed a spherical matrix of linking ¼-inch stainless steel rods ascending to a bloom of silver petals. “I wanted to go a bit further,” he said. “I’m a welder. I’m a metal sculptor. To make a square post just didn’t suit me.”

Miller’s peace pole does incorporate the tradition of sharing a message of peace. “May peace prevail on earth” is communicated on the sculpture in English, Spanish and the native language of the Yavapai Prescott Indian Tribe. In the Yavapai language, the message translates to “(Let) only good things remain on this earth.”

In both words and form, YC’s new peace pole is, as Miller intended, aspirational. “The 1,000 different pieces of the matrix represent the togetherness that people and the world need to have in order to promote piece,” Miller said, adding that he’s proud of the result and grateful for the opportunity to create a lasting symbol of peace for the YC Prescott campus.

Also in celebration of International Day of Peace, Patricia Berlowe of YC’s Osher Lifelong Learning Institute is facilitating small-group conversations around the subject of peace. The discussions are taking place at 10 a.m. and again at noon on Friday, Sept. 23, in Room 105, Building 3 on the Prescott Campus.

All are invited to take part in any and all of the International Day of Peace activities on Sept. 21 and Sept. 23. RSVPs are required for the small-group conversations. To reserve a spot, call 928-717-7634 or email prescottolli@yc.edu

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