The Art Center

Family Dinner Project

What is the Family Dinner Project?

*The Family Dinner Project, a nonprofit initiative started in 2010, champions family dinner as an opportunity for family members to connect with each other through food, fun and conversation about things that matter.

More than 20 years of scientific research shows “why” family mealtimes are so important. The Family Dinner Project provides the “how” for today’s busy families. Our team members have come from varied personal and professional backgrounds, including education, family therapy, research, food, social work, marketing and communication. With nonprofit partners and local champions, The Family Dinner Project team works online and at community events to help families increase the frequency, meaning and long-term benefits of their shared meals. We are based in Boston at Massachusetts General Hospital’s Psychiatry Academy.

Over the past 25 years, research has shown what parents have known for a long time: Sharing a fun family meal is good for the spirit, brain and health of all family members. Recent studies link regular family meals with the kinds of behaviors that parents want for their children: higher grade-point averages, resilience and self-esteem. Additionally, family meals are linked to lower rates of substance abuse, teen pregnancy, eating disorders and depression. We also believe in the power of family dinners to nourish ethical thinking.

Now, through this movement, families will come together to share their experiences and insights to help each other realize the benefits of family dinners. Together, they’ll figure out the resources needed – like tips for setting dinnertime goals, overcoming obstacles such as conflicting schedules and engaging everyone in meaningful conversation – to improve the frequency and quality of their mealtime interaction.

*Taken from Please visit their site for more details.

Tracy Family Foundation

Thanks to the Tracy Family Foundation, the Art Center will be hosting several fun, family centered activities throughout the year beginning September 2019 and ending August 2020.

We are so excited to bring about these fun and artistic opportunities for families in our community to enjoy, learn, and grow closer together with.

The Art Center’s Family Dinner Project Placemats!

Once a month, the Art Center will release a placemat with activities, discussion points, and upcoming Art Center classes and events. The Art Center will have a limited number of 11”x17” placemats available at the Art Center each month. However, there will be 8.5”x11” color and black & white PDFs available on Family Dinner Project monthly pages.

On each placemat will be a drawing activity and a monthly project. Upon completion of these projects, artists are encouraged to post photos of their artwork on Facebook and Instagram with the hashtag #qacfamilydinnerproject, this will enter them in for a chance to win a $10 gift certificate to be used for classes & workshops at the Art Center. There will be two drawings each month!

Family Dinner Project at ArtFest!

Families will be able to enjoy a picnic area at this year’s ArtFest where folks can learn more about the Family Dinner Project, have prompt questions to begin family discussions while you eat, and have a relaxing space to reflect on the day’s activities.

Paint Your Own Pottery- Family Dinner Edition

The Art Center is now offering Free Paint Your Own Pottery Kits to 50 local families! Kits will be available for pickup at the Art Center and can be taken home to create together as a family!

But wait, there’s more! The Art Center will host a social media contest after the two selected dates where families can post a photo on Facebook or Instagram of them using their Art Center dinnerware pottery during their family dinner. One participating family will then be randomly selected to win a free family membership to the Art Center. How cool!