Photo: Ken Shirey

Lehigh Valley Health Network’s New Art Project Unites the Public for a Great Cause

Health network partnering with ArtsQuest for community glass sculpture for Lehigh Valley Reilly Children’s Hospital

A prototype of one of the spheres

A prototype of one of the spheres

BETHLEHEM, PA—For the first time ever, Lehigh Valley Health Network (LVHN) is inviting the community to create a public art sculpture for its Lehigh Valley Hospital (LVH)−Cedar Crest campus, located at 1200 S. Cedar Crest Blvd., Allentown. This spring, Lehigh Valley Reilly Children’s Hospital is working with the ArtsQuest Glass Studio at the Banana Factory Arts Center to develop a one-of-a-kind glass sculpture that will adorn the entrance of the Children’s Hospital lobby, with more than 500 pieces of the sculpture created by members of the community.

On Saturday, March 16, and Sunday, March 24, the public is invited to make glass pieces for the sculpture during 20-minute Hot Glass Experiences at the ArtsQuest Glass Studio at the Banana Factory. During each session, the artists of the glass studio will work hand in hand with participants to custom craft the glass “magic beans” that will make up the three spheres included in the new sculpture.

More than 500 “magic beans” will be created in all, with each one numbered and having the name of the creator/donor associated with it. The glass pieces will then be assembled in multicolored orbs that will be suspended from the ceiling of the Lehigh Valley Reilly Children’s Hospital entrance. The goal is to create a magical, inspiring symbol of hope and community strength. By participating in the project, the public has the opportunity to collaborate on a strong gesture of support toward the children and families who visit the hospital.

The “magic bean” project has already attracted strong interest from the community with Just Born Quality Confections, Crayola, Guardian Life Insurance Company and doctors and staff from LVHN signing up for sessions to create beans.

Photo: Ken Shirey

Photo: Ken Shirey

“We are honored that LVHN Major Gift Officer Jane Nordell approached us about designing a unique sculpture that will feature pieces made by the community,” says ArtsQuest Glass Studio Director Dennis Gardner. “While it takes teamwork to create glass art, this is truly a new concept for us to have more than 500 people participate in one project. But that’s what makes the Lehigh Valley Reilly Children’s Hospital sculpture so great – it is truly a community creation in every sense of the word.”

Members of the public can craft their own “magic beans” during 20-minute Hot Glass Experiences at the ArtsQuest Glass Studio on March 16, noon-3 p.m., and March 24, noon-4 p.m. Cost is $75 per person and advance signup is strongly recommended.

Groups of 6-20 people can also book private hot glass parties, at a cost of $75 per person, to help create the sculpture and enjoy a unique teambuilding experience. Proceeds from the community-funded project will go to support both ArtsQuest and Lehigh Valley Reilly Children’s Hospital.

To sign up for a Hot Glass Experience, visit Local corporations, businesses and groups looking to book a Lehigh Valley Reilly Children’s Hospital Hot Glass Party can do so by contacting ArtsQuest’s Ken Shirey at