History

Since its inception the Parkland Art League has grown to include members from all over the Greater Lehigh Valley, as well as, New Jersey.

It all began in 1963 when the adult art class at the Parkland High School finished it’s studies and was ready to disband. Eight members, unwilling to quit so suddenly, asked themselves why they could not keep it up. And the Parkland Art League was born.

The original group consisted of Isabelle Frantz[Treasurer], Erna Rutz[VP], Mary Maguire[Secretary], Eleanor Haas, Ann Diehl [Hudsco], Pearl Snyder, Mary Herring[President] and Katherine Seisler. Initial dues were $3.

They first met at the South Whitehall Township Building and later at Wehr's Dam, the Parkland Jaycees Building and Luther Crest Retirement Community. Later the club met at the Lehigh Valley Active Life Center, 1633 Elm Street, Allentown, PA, and then briefly at the Macungie Institute, 510 East Main Street (Rt. 100), Macungie, PA. Presently the club meets at St. Anne's Episcopal Church, 6667 Lower Macungie Road, Trexlertown, PA.

The early sites for shows and displays included the Allentown Fairgrounds, Sears, Plaza Theater Lobby, Whitehall Township Bldg., L.V. Trust, Kempton Railroad, Lehigh Co. Cultural Center at So. Lehigh H.S., Cement Belt Fair, Rodale Mfg., Plantation House, Emmaus and Parkland Libraries, Dorney Park, Whitehall, Westgate, Allentown Outlet and Trexler Malls, Merchants and IVB Banks and Allentown College of St. Francis de Sales. In the years that followed, many other locations would be found to host our works and today the search for new and varied sites continues.

In 1969, Henry Stettler’s painting, “Guth’s Bridge” was chosen as a permanent gift for S. Whitehall Township.

The league’s 20th. Anniversary was celebrated in 1983 when President Marjorie Ryan honored the past presidents with a lifetime membership to the Parkland Art League. It’s 35th Anniversary was in 1998 when President Betty Allender honored nine of the past presidents.

The IRS non-profit status was established for the league in 1984.

Presidents of Parkland Art League

1963-64 Mary Herring

1965- Eleanor Haas [Klinger]

1966-70 Phyllis Schattner

1971-72 Ivy Kuhns

1973-74 William Rehm

1975-76 Joseph Micklos

1977-78 Charles Edwards

1979-80 Lillian Loux

1981-82 Cleo Jackson

1983-84 Marjorie Ryan

1985-86 Kay Peters

1987-88 Marilyn Huber

1989-90 Joanne Pekarik

1991-92 Nina Jackson

1993-94 Sylvia Roth

1995-96 Kathryn Walters

1997-98 Betty Allender

1999-02 Ron Pratt

2003-04 Jack Eagle

2005-08 Kathryn LaRose

2009-2010 Jane Fanok

2011-2012 Annette Shenberger

2013-2016 Julie Wehr

2017-2020 Deborah Haaf