December 2015

We have so much to celebrate and be thankful for at this close of 2015. While I’m aware of the gifts of this past year and of the holiday season, I’m also feeling impacted by yet another shooting yesterday. This time was at a disability agency, much like our own Sierra Regional Center, which serves so many of our participants. This news feels that much closer to home.

Of course, this is the nature of our lives – the light in the dark, seasons of love and celebration amidst suffering. In these moments, I am reminded again that the power of community and connection between people is so very important; not only to sustain us through grief and confusion, but also to encircle those of us who feel isolated, disempowered, and forgotten even in the best of times. The holiday season is a wonderful reminder to open our hearts to our communities and to our fellow man. Let us together find the light in the dark. It is my sincere hope that you and those who are dear to you are well and full of the joy of the season.

Sarah Toney

Development Director

Thank you, Scott!

This month we are saying a fond farewell to Scott Harrington, who is finishing six years on the NMTS board of directors. He was president of the board for two years and has served on our fundraising, board development, and event committees. Scott is pursuing a new chapter of his life in Seattle and he will be dearly missed.

Scott and I first crossed paths in Stockton in the 1990s, when we were both graduate students at UOP and were working for the San Joaquin County Mental Health Department. When we met again (many!) years later in Reno, I got to know him as a passionate advocate for inclusion. I also found out that he was a huge music lover, so he was a perfect fit for the NMTS board!

It has been a privilege to work with Scott over the past six years. He helped guide NMTS through some challenging times with unwavering support for our mission, participants, and staff. Thank you Scott for all you have done for me and for our NMTS community.


And here is what others have to say about Scott:

From board president Kate Kirkpatrick: “Scott has been an incredible advocate for NMTS and the participants. He is always quick to volunteer, ready to look for solutions, and happy to help. If Scott has bad days, he doesn’t let on. During his time as board president, he set the bar high for getting board members involved and helping to grow the organization. He has served as a role model for me, and I will miss his guidance and cheerful presence.”

From advisory board member Dee Dee Bossart: “What I remember about Scott is his inability to say ‘no’ to a request. He is also the best hugger I have ever known. The best time we had together was at a Reno Aces game where we had a few tequila shots, he reminds me often of this wonderful time.”

From board treasurer Chuck Kazemi: “What I admire most about Scott is his ability to always see the positive in an idea. When we sit around the board table and I throw out a ridiculous idea (like I tend to do), he isn’t so quick to completely disregard it. He’s constantly thinking of ways to improve things. That’s what I enjoy most about Scott!”

Noodles and Notes

We had a great time at Noodles and Notes this year with record attendance and wonderful performances by all of our classes. We’ll be getting more videos up on YouTube as time permits, so stay tuned. Please email Sarah if you have videos of Noodles and Notes that you’d like to share. We only captured a fraction of all the fun, so please let us know if we can share your videos with our Note-Ables family! Thank you to everyone who came to perform, volunteer, and cheer our performers on. It was a special evening.  

New in January

We’re starting another round of music and movement workshops in January! The workshops are taught by the wonderful Andrea Sullivan. Andrea not only is an experienced dance instructor, she has long been part of the NMTS family and has worked with people of all abilities. The next session starts January 11th/13th.

Jitterbugs 0 – 2 years old
Mondays 9:30 am – 10:15 am

Hokey Pokeys 3 – 5 years old
Mondays 3:30 pm – 4:15 pm

Fox Trots 6 – 10 years old
Mondays 4:30 pm – 5:15pm

The Whips 11 – 14 years old
Wednesdays 5:30 pm – 6:15 pm

Call the office 324-5521 or enroll online today! 

Best of Facebook

This past month our Facebook family loved this cartoon of Linus and Lucy. Linus is right, as always. The joy is not in the “product”, but in the doing. Especially when we are “doing” music together in community. Good and bad become meaningless as music opens doors for connection with others. So sing those carols and favorite songs – even if someone told you that you really shouldn’t sing. As my mom would say, they were just jealous of your greatness.

Upcoming Events

Breakfast with Santa – December 5th 8:00 a.m. – 11:00 a.m.

Our Holiday Choir will be caroling at the Breakfast with Santa! Come have a pancake breakfast, visit Santa, and sing along! This event is hosted by Northern Nevada Chapter of the Nevada Credit Union League. Breakfast is held at Cantina Los Tres Hombres in Victorian Square. Proceeds benefit Northern Nevada Miracle Children’s Network Hospital and Renown Children’s Hospital.

Light it Up! Morning Dance Party – December 7th 7:30 – 8:45 a.m.

Morning dance parties are starting up around the country. Why? Because dancing is fun and does more for waking up than a gallon of coffee could ever accomplish. This morning adventure is a lightly structured dance party, led by conscious dance facilitator Laurie Martin, and is on a donation basis. Come and dance with us! Park on the west side of McKinley and head down the steps to our basement classroom.

A Special Holiday Concert – Susan Mazer-Smith and Dallas Smith – December 13th 3:00 p.m.

Susan Mazer-Smith and Dallas Smith are exceptional jazz musicians who have performed around the world and have produced multiple recordings through their careers. They are holding a special intimate concert in honor of NMTS in their wonderful home performance space. Seasonal appetizers and beverages will be served. Please RSVP by calling 324-5521 or

Basement Session – December 14th 12:00 p.m.

Are you curious about music therapy or learning more about our programs? Our monthly Basement Sessions are a opportunity to hear stories and examples of the power of music therapy to transform peoples’ lives while enjoying tasty treats and a mini performance by The Note-Ables. Email Sarah Toney to reserve your space.

Evening of Romance – January 30th 8:00 p.m

Evening of Romance is just around the corner! The theme this year is a Winter Masquerade Ball, so start looking for that perfect winter-inspired mask. Tickets are now on sale on our website. $50 per ticket or $450 per reserved table for 10 guests.

November Thank Yous

Thank you to our classroom and office volunteers –

Anthony Braido, Briley Brewer, Taylor Crowhurst, Mark Geeson, Shannon Halliwell, Tia Henderson, Michael Lahnala, Marilyn Moon, Cindy Oesterle-Prescott, Mary Schoen, Nicole Williams, Amina Wilson, Mark Yan. And another huge thank you to Chris Middleton for her invaluable assistance with grant research and general office support over the past few months!

Thank you to our Noodles and Notes sponsor! 

We are so grateful to United Federal Credit Union and Mayte Castro, in particular, for being our champion sponsor for this year’s Noodles and Notes.

Thank you to our Noodles and Notes volunteers! 

We had a great time at Noodles and Notes this year! We couldn’t have done it without our fantastic volunteers: Gunnar Altenburg, Rick Altenburg, Barb Anderson, Gianna Baldazo, Anthony Braido, Briley Brewer, Allison Cook, Taylor Crowhurst, Cheryl Eckert, Jill Gabel, Mike Gully, Jose Gutierez, Shannon Halliwell, Lori Henderson, Tia Henderson, Courtney Mayer, Chris Middleton, Miss Reno, Sparks & Washoe County Scholarship Program, Marilyn Moon, Serena Mulock, Tori Mulock, Cindy Oesterle-Prescott, Raiza Ribiero, Mary Shoen, Laurel Sweigart, Sigma Alpha Iota, Amina Wilson, Jon Wilson

Endowment Founding Circle

A very special circle of people!

The Board of Directors of Note-Able Music Therapy Services: Ellie Van Winkle, President

The Advisory Board of Note-Able Music Therapy Services
The Eckert Family
Joe Macaluso
Tony Macaluso – In memory of Joe, Mary and Fina Macaluso
Pythia Sisters of Nevada: Jeanille Hyde, Grand Chief
Ms. Heidemarie Rochlin
Dr. & Mrs. Tousson Toppozada
Earl & Peggy Whitney
The Wilson Family
The Note-Able Music Therapy Services endowment fund is managed by the Community Foundation of Western Nevada. By contributing to the fund, you will guarantee that children and adults – no matter their age or ability – will always have a place where they can learn, grow, and experience a community that is connected through the love of music. Please call or email us for more information about how you can contribute to the legacy of NMTS.



News & Notes is the monthly newsletter from Note-Able Music Therapy Services. Here is your chance to catch up with the band, check out upcoming events, find out how music therapy is impacting our community and the world, and much more.  You can also keep up with us by checking out our website and following us on Facebook and Twitter.


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Board of Directors

Scott Harrington (Past President)
Kate Kirkpatrick (President)
Jim Robertson (Secretary)
Chuck Kazemi (Treasurer)
Debra Bradshaw
John Firestone
Dave Stockman

Advisory Board

Barbara Anderson
Tammy Borde
Christi Cakiroglu
Scott Faulkner
John Firestone
Bob Fulkerson
Mary Lee Fulkerson
Joe Macaluso
Lisa Mancini
Jeanine Mooers
Cindy Oesterle-Prescott
Toni Taylor

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