From “Arts in Africa” to “Zumba Gold,” the Main Line School Night continues to offer a variety of non-credit programs, courses and classes for lifelong adult learners.
“Main Line School Night attracts students due to the multitude of daytime and evening locations in the area, especially at our headquarters, The Creutzburg Center,” said Main Line School Night's executive director, Rachel Laibson.
Throughout the seven decades since its founding by area businessman Harry Creutzburg, Main Line School Night has enhanced the lives of residents throughout Delaware County and its surrounding communities.
“We accommodate more than 10,000 students per year with some taking more than one class,” Laibson said. “It is an affordable way to do something you've always wanted to do.”
Creutzburg was inspired to offer evening classes at Radnor High School to increase community support for the school’s activities.
Without using public resources, Creutzburg helped formulate the first class schedule that served more than 500 students.
Over the years Lower Merion, Harriton and Conestoga High Schools, along with other locations, were added under the leadership of attorney and longtime volunteer David Kreitler.
Kreitler, a founding member, helped to guide Main Line School Night into becoming a national model for adult education until his death in 2009.
In 2010, Philadelphia Magazine named Main Line School Night to their Best of Philly list as the “Best way to learn something (in a classroom).”
Through strategic alliances and partnerships with Radnor Township, Bryn Mawr College, and Surrey Services for Seniors, Main Line School Night has utilized innovative ways to remain relevant while providing quality programming.
“We are working with Radnor Township to preserve the legacy of our organization – a registered 501(c)(3) in Pennsylvania,” Laibson said.
For more than four decades, Radnor Township has recognized the value of Main Line School Night, provided resources to ensure it remains a community resource and contributed to the vital public-private partnership relationship.
Renovations to the stately Creutzburg Center in Harford Park, which houses the organization’s administrative office and is a venue to a number of the classes, have been taking place since Laibson’s hire.
Laibson oversees all aspects of administration and programming for Main Line School Night and has begun to implement a comprehensive community outreach campaign leading into the organization’s 75th anniversary in 2013.
A Delaware County native, graduate of Oberlin College and the Wharton School of Business, Laibson’s experience contributing to the Wharton International Cultural Show and Philadelphia International Festival of the Arts has already begun to bear fruit.
Tuition fees and donations by individuals have sustained Main Line School Night.
Today, some of Main Line School Night’s programs are funded in part by the Pennsylvania Council on the Arts (PCA), whose mission is to foster the excellence, diversity and vitality of the arts in Pennsylvania and to broaden the availability and appreciation of those arts throughout the state.
Main Line School Night promotes the partnership with PCA through popular programs taught by Gloria Kingcade, who has offered her Soul Line Dancing classes since 2007.
“Students have the opportunity to get fit and have fun as they dance to R&B, jazz, the Philly Sound, classic oldies, and the latest soul favorites,” Kingcade said.
A certified primary aerobics instructor with the American Aerobic Association International and International Sports Medicine Association, Kingcade represents the quality teaching offered by Main Line School Night.
“Recently retired, I was looking to keep myself occupied and acquire some new interests and a friend suggested we take some courses together,” stated a Main Line School Night student and registration assistant. “I have already used knowledge from Main Line School Night to change my eating habits toward a healthier lifestyle, pay more attention to regular physical exercise and meet some very interesting new friends.”
A communal learning experience is one of the founding principles of Main Line School Night in which it takes tremendous pride.
“If there are classes people would like us to offer, feel free to contact our office and make your request,” Laibson said.
Visit www.mainlineschoolnight.org or call (610) 687-8201 for more information on current courses and how to contribute.