Happy last weeks of summer! It’s been a summer packed with activity for team MICA. We’ve continued to work with the City and MainStreet Properties to secure the site for our Art Center’s future home. We’ve also been working diligently with many community leaders and our expert consultants to update the business plan (pro forma) and the brand identity in preparation for the capital campaign for the Center. We are in a strong position to start the fall season with forward momentum.

We have a transition coming to our internal team, Sharon Perez, Director of Strategic Relationships, announced at the MICA Board Meeting last week, that her last day will be on September 30.

From Sharon:

“It has been my personal honor and privilege to work on such a meaningful project for the good of our community. The potential benefits of an active arts center to the quality of life on Mercer Island are enormous and from the first day that I learned about MICA, I wanted to be a part of making this a reality for all Islanders.

My role was originally projected to be a handful of hours each week to be “of counsel” for a finite fundraising campaign, but it turned into much more than that.

I’ve appreciated that this role has been an opportunity to do some of what I do best, like building community, connecting people, and strategizing cooperation between the private and public sectors; and now it is time for me to move into a new role where I can incorporate the whole spectrum of my interests, experience, and network.

While that’s taking shape, I won’t be involved with the current phase of MICA, but once the capital campaign starts, I hope to join the campaign effort and fulfill my dream to raise some big money to get our Arts Center built. I remain a dedicated advocate for MICA, our community, and all of the arts and artists on Mercer Island.”

In the year and a half I’ve worked with Sharon, time and time again she has been a true pro, the master connector, and a tireless proponent of MICA. She has given MICA her all for 4 years, what a great legacy and we are all deeply thankful. I will miss working with her and am thrilled she will be a part of our campaign committee when we get that launched in the months ahead. Thank you, Sharon, MICA wouldn’t still have the great opportunity it does without you.

Paul Shoemaker
Executive Director


The MI Pumpkin Walk will take place on Sunday, October 27th from 5-8 pm at Luther Burbank Park (rain or shine). Families will stroll around the Meadow Loop Trail that will be transformed by the glow of hundreds of carved pumpkins. This is a fun non-spooky event for all ages. Children and adults alike will enjoy viewing the displays and finding their own creations! It’s truly a magical experience!

This is a FREE community event, and as the holiday season approaches, MIYFS will be accepting non-perishable food items in the parking lots as families access the trail. Please help stock the Food Pantry to support our local residents in need.

In order to make the MI Pumpkin Walk a success we need donations of carved pumpkins! Carvers of all ages and abilities are encouraged to drop-off a creatively carved pumpkin the morning of the event between 9am-3am at the North Parking Lot. Candles will be provided. Pumpkins can be retrieved outside the Administrative Building 9am-5pm the following day.

Several food trucks will be onsite including: Buns on Wheels, Ezell’s, and Drifting Donuts.

This event was made possible by a partnership with MI Youth & Family Services Foundation and local business sponsors. A big thank you to: MI Athletic Club, Homegrown, Fitness Together, Mercer Island Dentistry, Barre Rev, Island Books, John L. Scott Real Estate, MI Pediatrics, L’Experience, and Compass.

For more info: