The Write Notes – September 2019

Dear Students and Families,

We know music nourishes the soul.  It’s a true honor for SJAA to be able to join the amazing cast of nationally-recognized talent for the annual “Bluegrass Battles Hunger” this weekend.

The event raises money to support the Second Harvest Food Bank that provides food to those in need in our entire region.  It’s important and compassionate work that serves many thousands of families.

Lots of other exciting things and important info in this month’s newsletter.

Thanks in advance for the time to read through and another big THANK YOU for being a big part of the SJAA family.

Let me know if you need anything, anytime.
jason and SJAA

816 294 4856 (personal cell for call or text)

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BlueGrass Battles Hunger – Bluegrass Battles Hunger – The St. Joseph “Bluegrass” Academy will be forming alongside some great national acoustic, bluegrass, folk and old-time acts in support of the Second Harvest Food Bank.  We’ll have all the fiddlers and guitarists out with featured vocalists and instrumentalists.  Not to be missed!!!  FREE will donations and open to the public.

Time:  2pm sound check, 230 – ish,  Set 45 min.
Coleman Hawkins Park
Downtown Gazebo

“Spencer and Raines Workshop and Jam”

We would love to see some of those fiddlers and guitars at the workshop. Triscia and Howard are some truly heavy hitters in the old time music world and are sought after for their workshops on fiddling and old time music history all over the world so it would be a very good workshop to attend.

12 pm – Fiddle workshop at Christ Episcopal and also a Community Jam at 130 ahead of the SJAA set at 230.

It’s A Girl!!
Welcoming Eden Faith Dirks who arrived on Sept. 10 at 7 lbs and 7 oz.  Mom and baby are doing well (hope Dad and Brother can say the same!)  Congratulations to our very own JC Dirks and the whole family on your beautiful new addition.

Josephine Expo

The Academy will have a booth for the 15th annual Josephine Expo for Women at the Civic Arena.  10am to 4pm.  Come say “Hi” and be sure to tell your friends about the SJAA.  Over 100 vendors, Live music and much more.  Director, Jason Riley performs at 1130 am.

Photo Day at the SJAA!
We are having our very first photo “shoot-e-nanny” on Sunday, Oct. 20, 2-5pm at the historic and photogenic Wyeth-Tootle Masion (1100 Charles St, St. Joseph MO).

Photographer, Tyler Osborn will spend the day with us to create his amazing heirloom photographs for us.  

Students will pose for individual and group shots with their instruments.

We’ll have some other fun activities, crafts, refreshments, open mic and jam sessions along with your photo sitting.  Sitting is FREE and open to all.  Single Photos or special packages will be available for purchase through Tyler Osborn Studios.

Event is from 2-5pm so sitting times are limited.  

Reserve your sitting time and RSVP by contacting…

MORE News…
We’re Still expecting… – We’ve got a growing family here at the SJAA with 1 more new baby on the way.  Andrew’s wife is expecting a new addition to their family soon.  Wishing them the very best with all.

Under Construction – “Bless this Mess”.  We recently completed a major waterproofing solution which included work inside and outside the SJAA.  Our concrete in the front sidewalk should be repaired TODAY along with some electrical improvements and maybe even a freshly painted exterior (weather permitting).  New carpet coming in October!  Please just watch your steps inside and out of the SJAA with all the construction going on.

We are EXPANDING! – The SJAA will be expanding into the space next door to us (the former CML ceramics) in the coming months.  We’ll be adding some studios, a few great teachers and classroom and performances spaces that will allow us to offer so much more to our members and the community.

Auto-Payments – We are moving all payments to Auto-Pay by December 1st. There are forms by the front door or ask you teacher and return completed forms to them.
Congratulations!! – Jack Wing received a 1 rating in Violin last Saturday at the MMTA district auditions.  He will go to state in Springfield in November.  Way to go, Jack!

Welcome to our NEW Students and families!!

Cynthia, Christian, Isaac, Alyana, Breanna, Whitney Ellie, Chad, Tristan & Cash.


Student of the Month

Our September “Student of the Month” is…

Molly R.!!!

We are so lucky to have Molly and her family with us at the SJAA.  Molly sings and plays guitar, ukulele and performs non-stop with us (catch her at BBH this weekend!).

Sweet, fun and serious about her friendships, her athletics AND her music.

We’ll celebrate Molly with an iTunes gift card for her!

Thank you, Molly for referring your friends and family to the Academy.


To be considered for Student of the Month, be sure to talk to your teacher about all your musical and extracurricular activities, share pictures and refer your fellow musicians to the academy.

Books!Is your student ready for new books? We carry a very limited supply of instructor approved titles. Talk with your teacher about your next books and we’ll get them ordered.
Early childhood music classes!
(Coming Soon)

2 and up – mommy and me class – infant to one year olds – large class setting.

Musical, vocal and dance playtime and games.

The benefits are developing musical abilities on an appropriate age level, developing creativity and imagination, all motor development, and music have been proven to help improve language, literacy, and social/emotional development.

Email jason at for more information.

We love this photo.  Too bad these ladies are no fun.
10th Annual JoeStock Music Festival with Sydney, Molly, Ashyn and Reaganne.
SJAA’s Summer FestivalsUpcoming Recitals


Sept. 15 – 2pm SJAMTA student recital

Sept. 28 –  Bluegrass Battles Hunger, 230pm 

Oct. 5 – Josephine Expo

Oct. 20 – Photo Day with the SJAA wth Tyler Osborn Studios

Oct. 23 – names due for Monster Concert

Oct. 27 – 2pm Halloween-themed SJAMTA student recital

Nov. 17 – 2pm SJAMTA student recital (patriotic/Thanksgiving themed)z

Dec. 7 – Mall-a-thon 10am-4pm at East Hills Mall (SJAA time slot MORNING TBA)


Feb. 8 – SJAMTA Monster Concert (rehearsals Jan 31, Feb 7)

March 8 – 2pm SJAMTA student recital

April 25 – SJAMTA Evaluatives

April 26 – 2pm SJAMTA student recital, 3:30 SJAMTA Honors Recital at First Presbyterian

June 13 – 230pm HawkFest
SJAA Specific Recitals in BOLD


While we are still accepting VENMO, cash and checks, the SJAA is moving closer to convenient auto-drafting from credit cards or your bank account.  All Students will be asked to set-up for Auto-Pay by DECEMBER 1. Ask you teacher for a form or feel free to follow the link to fill the authorization, bring it to your lesson and we’ll get you set up.

Lesson Policy
– Is here and copies are at the studio…

Thank you for reading “The Write Notes” – Newsletter from the St. Joseph Arts Academy!

It’s going to be a great month.

Thank you for encouraging the advancing musicians in your life and in our community.  We are making the world a better place through music.

Here’s to YOUR music success!

Jason Riley
8162944856 (personal cell)
Here to help! Call or text if you need anything at all.

Referral Program – We have a great family of students and teachers at the SJAA.  We are extremely discerning in selecting the very best coaches and students when growing our family.  We want great students just like you.  The SJAA is now able to offer a FREE lesson for referring new students who register for lessons.  Thank you for referring your friends and family to be a part of our SJAA family.

Does Your Teacher Have Openings?

JC – Mondays, 330 & 630
Andrew – Tuesdays, 4pm
Emily – Friday 530, Saturday morning.
Monica – Monday, 6pm
Brent – Tuesday 3 & 630, Thursday 730
Jason – Full
Jolie – Full
Lori – Full
Terry – Full
Frank – Monday 330 or 4

 SJAA Classes/Courses – Guitar, Piano, Violin, Voice, Uke, Early Childhood

TeacherZone is our on-line platform for our students and our teachers.

Free Wi-Fi – SJAA password “MusicAccomplished”

Academy Mission

Our mission at the St. Joseph Arts Academy is to provide the highest quality musical instruction and performance opportunities to beginning and advancing students in the Midland empire. We use our patience, enthusiasm and loyalty to encourage, inform and entertain others to happily share their skill and talent in love and gratitude to make the world a better place.


Music Accomplished!

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