Governor's Arts Awards
Connie Bonfy and Gary Gackstatter accepted Governor’s Arts Awards April 10 in a ceremony at Century II Concert Hall in Wichita.
Bonfy, director of institutional grants and arts programming at Cowley, received the award for being an arts advocate. She was honored for her work with the Arkansas City Arts Council and her role in creating Ark City’s annual PrairieFest celebration.
Gackstatter, director of instrumental music at Cowley, is conductor of the Winfield Regional Symphony and accepted the award on behalf of the symphony. The symphony was awarded as an arts organization. International opera star Samuel Ramey, a Colby native, gave a concert after receiving the Kansas Arts Commission’s Distinguished Artist Award.
Bonfy has played a significant role in cultural arts programming at Cowley and for Cowley County in general. She has been able to help secure grants to fund arts projects, and has worked hard to bring a variety of artists to Arkansas City and the entire county.
Gackstatter has directed the Winfield Regional Symphony for several years and has worked with various visiting musicians to create a unique sound. Those include the groups Kansas, Three Dog Night, Don McLean, and the Paul Winter Consort.