Founders Albert and Clare Appel, both musicians and professional music educators, believed that art plays a crucial role in developing children’s learning skills, encouraging personal growth and instilling a sense of community and responsibility. The Staff and Board of Trustees continue to believe that the arts transform people’s lives by being an essential part of the human experience.
Appel Farm was founded in 1960 as a private summer arts camp for children. The Appel’s converted their 176-acre farm in rural Salem County, New Jersey, into a unique community of students, artists and art educators. In 1978, Appel Farm Arts & Music Center was incorporated as a nonprofit organization with a professional staff and a volunteer Board of Trustees.
Since then, Appel Farm has evolved into a multidisciplinary regional arts center serving audiences, artists and students that come from across the state, country and the world to participate in a variety of artistic programs including:
Appel Farm Arts Camp
The overnight summer camp is a non-competitive and supportive place of learning and personal growth for young people with interest and abilities in the arts. The international staff of artist and arts educators has impacted and transformed many young lives influencing them to continue to explore their love for the arts at home and in school.
Arts Classes and Workshops
Adults and children are able to take newly redesigned arts classes and workshops, and have the opportunity to study in well-equipped, on-site arts studios with professional working artists. Arts Lab, a community partnership with the Pittsgrove School District provides an opportunity for children to attend reduced cost classes each spring.
Appel Farm also provides a unique, three-chambered noborigama wood-fire kiln to ceramic artists in the region, giving them the opportunity to advance their craft.
Outreach in Schools and the Community
Visual Arts, theater and music residencies and workshops impact thousands of school children and teachers in a four-county area including providing daily music instruction at the Pittsgrove Township Schools and the Vineland Public Charter School. Appel Farm provides leadership and staff for the Salem County Vocational Technical Schools Theatre, Dance and Visual Arts Academies.
Appel Farm also provides artistic experiences for various nursing homes and therapeutic group homes serving the elderly and clients with disabilities.
Our rural conference center provides a quiet, hospitable environment for professional, artistic, school, church, and counseling groups to explore their own programming in a private setting. Many brides and grooms have rented our facilities for their special DIY (do it yourself) weddings.
Our programs continue to build on the Appels' founding principles, providing opportunities for arts education, arts appreciation and creative expression to tens of thousands of children and adults a year. Join us and let the arts transform your life!