Dixie Bowmen Archery Club
458-7209 or dixiebowmen.org
Hosting archery tournaments since 1960, the Dixie Bowmen Archery Club decided to turn its activities to charity in August 2011 with a major archery competition from which proceeds were donated to the Children's Miracle Network and the Wounded Warriors Program. Though the club currently has only 100 members, they were able to raise $8,000. "We were amazed by the turnout we had this year, with people coming in from as far as Pennsylvania and North Carolina," says member Karen Scott, who's married to club president Dennis Scott. "We sure hope to do it again."
Vegetarian Society of Richmond
344-4356 or vegetarianrichmond.org
Looking to change preconceived notions about vegetarians, the Vegetarian Society of Richmond opens its doors to veggie and meat lovers alike to show new ways to live and eat healthy. "Many of our members aren't even vegetarian," says says VSOR president Louis Angeletti. "They're just interested in good food and health." As one of Richmond's main sources for information on vegetarian and vegan diets, the club provides free literature on the lifestyle, as well as being one of the main sponsors of the Richmond Vegetarian Festival, hosted every June.
Smocking Arts Guild of America
Practiced since the Middle Ages, smocking is an embroidery technique used to gather fabric so that it can be stretched, a method that was very much needed before the invention of elastic. Local members of the Smocking Arts Guild of America continue the craft in service to the community, sewing embroidered baby gowns, bonnets and blankets, the majority of which are donated to VCU Medical Center. They also create custom-made pieces for loved ones. "When we do crafts, it's done with love and attention," explains Linn Kreckman, the chapter's president. "It's a part of you going into the construction and craft, and that is transferred into the love you give for your family."
344-0906, ext. 238, or richmondballet.com
If your heart pounds while watching a dancer pirouette, then Forte, a volunteer organization that supports the Richmond Ballet, is the club for you. Members assist in organizing and hosting the Kentucky Derby Day Party and other important fundraisers, which are critical to the continuing success and growth of Richmond Ballet, its school and its outreach activities. "Forte is particularly special for us because it helps connect our artists with those who support them, creating a more unique connection than we would otherwise have," says Caitlyn Powitz, Richmond Ballet's public relations and promotions coordinator.
On-the-Air Radio Players
501-5138 or henricorecandparks.com
The On-the-Air Radio Players re-create and produce live broadcasts of 1940s radio shows from "the golden age of radio," including live sound effects and music. Performers are selected through auditions for three productions a year held at the Cultural Arts Center at Glen Allen. "It's a way to keep live radio up and running," says Amy Perdue, the center's senior coordinator.
Old Dominion Historical Fire Society
(703) 255-2016 or odhfs.org
Formed in 1978, the Old Dominion Historical Fire Society has dedicated more than 35 years to the preservation and display of antique firefighting equipment. "We help remind Virginians that firefighting is part of the major fabric of America's history," says the society's president, Clyde Clark. Currently 300 members strong, the club showcases its collection at more than 200 events statewide, including 50 to 60 in the Richmond area, ranging from small neighborhood block parties to parades. With these appearances, members, a large portion of them former firefighters, take part in educating Virginians on fire prevention and safety.
285-3085 or ikebanaofrichmondva.org
Translated from Japanese as "living flowers," ikebana is the art form of Japanese flower arrangement. The first Thursday of the month from September through May, Ikebana of Richmond members hold workshops and demonstrations in flower arranging. They also take part in other forms of Japanese art; at their February meeting, members will learn the art of making Japanese dolls. "You're encouraged to create different things through a different culture," says former president Keesung Ro. "When you learn how to create the different floral models, it makes you think differently."