Heritage Artists


ICHA monetarily supports the following organization

Open Arms Dance Project

Open Arms Dance Project is a multigenerational & inclusive modern dance company; welcoming people of all ages -- with and without disabilities.  Their mission is to move the community towards greater compassion through our actions and our art.

In 2009, funded by a grant from the Boise City Department of Arts and History, Megan Brandel, Artistic Director, founded Open Arms Dance Project.  To enrich her teaching of dancers with disabilities, Megan has trained in Brain-Compatible Dance Education with Anne Green Gilbert (2012), Integrated Dance with Jurg Koch (2013), and the Dance for Parkinson's disease program (2014).  Megan is Betty Jo Evan’s, ICHA charter member daughter.

Open Arms dancers range in age from 7-70+ years young.  Some dancers have physical and/or intellectual disabilities, and others do not.  All are respected for what they add to the group, whether that be youthful energy, humor, wisdom, dance skills, or a positive attitude.  

The dancers perform about five times each season. Previous shows have included:  

  • 2009 Special Olympics World Winter Games; 

  • Idaho Women's Fitness Celebration; 

  • STEP (Student Transition Education Program) fundraiser; 

  • Treefort Music Festival; 

  • Down's Syndrome Buddy Walk; 

  • Idaho Special Olympics Opening Ceremonies; 

  • Jump & Jive Food Drive; 

  • Anser Charter School show; 

  • School of Balance dance concerts; and 

  • site specific flash-mobs wherever we want to move the community towards greater compassion! 

If you desire further information about Open Arms Dance Project, see their website at:  or Facebook at 

Chair - Pat Marler

Idaho  Heritage Artists
Currently meeting at CapEd Administrative Office - 275 S. Stratford Dr Meridian, ID
Pat Marler, President
Glenice Powell, Webmaster