“Butler Museum of American Art” by Isabella Palowitz, Ursuline student. Youngstown is made up of a multitude of different individuals, all with their own thoughts and opinions on the city they live in. Instead of always having blogs written by the City of You’s creative team, we’re going to change the perspective a bit and allow Youngstown’s youth to shine. A group of high schoolers have been taking a summer course at Youngstown State University with the City of You’s own RJ Thompson. In this course, they’re learning how to blog, make graphics and be more active in the community. They were asked to write a blog about something within city limits that they think should be recognized  more by those who live in Youngstown. The responses that the City of You received were too good not to be shared – so here they are. They are edited a bit for clarity, but are being presented with the same style and nuance that the writer used when he or she wrote it originally. We’re excited to present a new perspective on Youngstown from some of its brightest young minds. Enjoy!

Bookmarked as the first museum of American art in the country, the Butler Institute was founded in 1919 by a man named Joseph G. Butler, Jr. right here in Youngstown.

In addition to being the first museum of American art, the Butler is unique in the fact that admission is free and it receives no funding from the city, instead relying on donations and grants from the community and nation.

The Butler’s main focus is to collect, preserve and house works of all types of art made by the people of the United States of America. The museum hosts a variety of collections, such as its permanent and traveling collections. Art from the traveling collection is loaned to the museum for a certain amount of time before the pieces go back to touring the world, emphasizing the Butler’s dedication to cultural exploration and appreciation.

Featured in the museum is art for every taste.

For instance, The Beecher Center is a wing of the Butler housing only new media and electronic art with a huge variety of digital technology, such as holographic displays and colored lasers. The Tastefully American exhibit features art from the industrial revolution, dreamy watercolor landscapes, eerily-realistic sculptures of people, the daily life of a working citizen over the course of our country’s progression, and, my personal favorite, a whole room dedicated to Native American portraits and art.

In addition to housing something for every taste bud, the Butler has a piece of treasure for every age. The museum offers an Arts in the Early Morning program consisting of free tours tailored to specific age groups. The Stroller Art tour is designed for parents with small children, the Young Friends’ Adventure tour is for adults bringing along toddler to preschool-aged kids, and Senior Art and Learn is constructed for senior citizens. If guided tours aren’t your thing, do not fear, for any person is free to explore the museum in any which way they wish.

The Butler Institute also hosts a variety of different exhibitions and events. For example, A Century of Fashion by Pete Ballard is on display all through 2017, showcasing historically accurate women’s fashion costumes. The 81st National Midyear Exhibition will be taking place from July 9, 2017 to August 20, 2017, and will be presenting works from contemporary artists in all forms, such as photography, digital art, and much more. The Americana and Folk Art gallery is also available for viewing all through 2017.

The museum is open from Tuesday to Saturday, 11 A.M. to 4 P.M., with the exception of major holidays. For more information about The Butler Institute of American Art, visit butlerart.com/. If you are interested in keeping the museum alive and thriving, donations can be made at butlerart.com/product/donation/.