Note: You can find more about our annual event, Creative Aging Symposium, here.
black dandelion on white background Spark: Creative Aging Gatherings
Spark: Creative Aging Gatherings

Spark seeks creative connection, mutual understanding, and unity with creative engagement professionals in the fields of aging, arts, culture, health, and more. As a collective, we are committed to improving our engagement strategies to be more inclusive and to celebrate communities of untapped potential.

Join us for monthly virtual gatherings, where we learn about creative longevity  and support each other in developing meaningful engagement programs. It doesn't matter how you define your work - as a senior living provider, artist, museum docent, home health aide, etc. We are passionate about creative engagement of all kinds with older adults, adults with disabilities, and cross-generational groups. If that's you, you've found your people! We'll announce the date/time/Zoom link every month on Facebook.

Connecting individuals passionate about creativity and aging.

Thriving communities that embrace the engagement and empowerment of older adults through creativity.

About Us
We are a collective of individuals throughout the U.S. who are passionate about the creative arts and their power to foster healthy aging and vibrant communities. We foster connection through learning, sharing, support, and celebration. Spark aims to be inclusive, accessible, and indispensable. All are welcome!

Past Gatherings
Our monthly gatherings are a time for connection. We host artists or organizations that lead interactive elements and share about their creative aging work. Attendees range from teaching artists, professionals in elder services, representatives from cultural organizations, and students looking to learn more about the creative aging field.

For up to date information on monthly gatherings visit us on Facebook.

All are welcome!
Would you like to present at one of our gatherings? We'd love to hear from you. Email us at

November 2022: Open Forum
This is the last gathering of the year. If you have any upcoming events or opportunities, this is a great time to share. This will be an open format gathering without structured presentations. So feel free to hop in and get a boost!! This is a gathering for folks to connect around the intersection between arts and aging. Together we hope to enrich the field by sharing information, opportunities, and to support one another.

October 2022: Well Connected Radio Theatre
We are excited to welcome the Well Connected Radio Theatre group to perform an excerpt from one of their virtual productions. "Eye Exam" follows care partners as they navigate their changing medical needs and their changing relationship dynamics. Group discussion on themes will follow the short performance.

September 2022: Open Forum
This gathering is an open forum. Let us know what you are working on, share a challenge and success, seek advice and offer inspiration. Creative Spark will lead a short creative exercise to kick it off. This would be a great gathering to invite new people into our circle. Please share with folks curious, passionate, or interested in the intersection between arts and aging.

August 2022: Summer Fun - Nature Projects & the Big Oops
We continue our Summer Fun Series! This is a time for creative play so come with an open mind, paper, and writing utensils (the more colorful, the better!). 
- Celebrating Nature with Gayle Wanamaker. Gayle will share creative ideas for incorporating natural elements into gifts and other projects. 
- Rochelle Rabouin combines educational lessons with artistic exercises that dazzle both elders and youngers alike. Join us to explore 'The Big Oops'. 

July 2022: Summer Fun - Movement & Heritage Boxes
Liv Schaffer lead us in a movement moment. Liv is an artist and educator, director of the intergenerational Dance Generators. Liv will share with us details on her current Encore fellowship and her work at EngAge.

Joining us from Maryland is "Auntie Afrika" Sharon Lee Minor King, Ph.D, arts educator, creative consultant, and cultural anthropologist. Together we will create a collective "Heritage Box". Bring an object for the box that represents a gift imparted to you from an influential elder something that you would like to share with future generations. 

June 2022: ReImagining Dementia
In conversation with ReImagining Dementia, an international coalition promoting creativity, joy and the possibility for growth for everyone impacted by dementia. A panel discussion with members of the coalition and watch party of "Let's ReImagine".

May 2022: Community-Based Nutrition Models
- WiseHealthSF's engagement model is designed to reduce isolation and increase healthy behaviors among hard to reach populations.
- Market Day joined us to share their story of bringing farmers markets to accessible locations where community connection, volunteerism, and creative enchantment is infused into these pop-up events.
- Taste of Home a San Jose community-based arts initiative celebrating stories and raising awareness around food insecurity.

April 2022: Creative Conversations about Climate Change
A discussion on the impact of climate change on older adults and explores creative approaches to advocacy. Presenting:
- Dr Mitch Smyer of Growing Greener who leads an empowered approach drawing on insights from psychology, human-centered design and climate communication strategies to engage older adults' time, experience, and talent to combat the climate crisis.
- Mary Kott of Front Porch joins to share of her work with native gardens and fostered monarch butterfly habitats in senior living communities across California.

March 2022: The Animal Bond
Celebrates the animal human bond and how this relationship impacts the health of individuals, care partnerships, and communities. Presenting:
- Muttville, senior dog rescue
- The Rhinoceros Project, an art and advocacy community project
- Connected Horse, equine engagement with care partners
- SF Animal Care, volunteer program and adoption

February 2022: Debriefing Creative Aging Symposium
We gather to discuss themes from the Creative Aging Symposium, including our legacies of belonging, the need for intergenerational spaces, and more.

January 2022: In Nature
Explores the great outdoors through programs created in and inspired by nature. With Bay Area Older Adults, Impromptu No TuTu, Institute on Aging, and the GBHI Atlantic FellowsCelebrate the summer months with creative friends in an hour of making and sharing.