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Preparation Prison Life After

07. Activities

Arts

Prisons always have inmates that have artistic skills such as drawing, painting, playing musical instruments and even theater acting.

Working with prison staff, artists are able to purchase a number of supplies for their work.  Canvas, brushes, oil paints, pencils and inks are just some of the supplies available.  The costs of these are the responsibility of the inmate and are paid for through the commissary account.  No supplies can be sent in from friends or family.

Prisons have music rooms that are stocked with different instruments.  While there is no Steinway, or Gibson Strata available, basic instruments are available and must be shared.  If you are a musician, you will not be able to bring your instrument into the camp, nor can anyone send you an instrument.  You will have to make due with what is there and inmates do a good job of that.  Good musicians put on concerts or just sit around playing music for a few people that want to listen.  If you cannot play an instrument but have a voice, some prisons even have karaoke nights for entertainment.

Volunteers from the community are known to come into prisons with art programs for inmates as well.  It is difficult to reach out to a group from prison, but sometimes you get lucky and someone in the community has something for the inmates, including art.

There are also hobbycraft activities including ceramics, leatherwork, models, clay, mosaics, crochet, knitting, sculptures, and woodworking.  These types of activities tend to reflect the interest of the inmate population and staff at the institution.  If there is something that you find interesting as a hobby then the staff will try to accommodate.  Most all materials for hobbycraft are made available through inmate purchases, though there are some donations made to the prison as well.

There is a Movie Night as well.  Prison staff show movies on weekends and they are generally the ones that you rent from services like NetFlix.  They are fairly current and are shown at set times in a large auditorium or on the TVs in the dormitory.

Whether it is art, music or a hobby, you will have the ability to choose some activity to use your creatives skills.  If you are lacking in this area, then you are certain to find a class where someone will teach you.