Keeping Your Arts Alive

Public and private contributions to the arts dropped again this year. Popular programs like the Summer Sounds series depend on municipal appropriations. And school art programs are primarily funded by the increasingly strained property tax.

Art is an economic engine but it is far more than a retail sale or a paycheck.

If you read my arts column regularly, we have looked at a boatload of cultural economy numbers. The data shows that Vermont cannot afford to lose the Arts. The Arts boost school test scores. The Arts improve our sense of community. And it doesn’t hurt that a painting or photograph, an original song, a well-staged play, or a warm book on a cold winter day all bring light to our lives.

More than that has happened this year. Artists have done more. Artists have shared more art and more resources this year, from donations to United Way to music at the Cap Cancer Blues Fest and much more. Artists have been generous with their time, their talent, their product. Artists are concerned about their community.

The All Arts Council is the only all-volunteer Local Arts Service Organization in the state. Your  year-end gift to the AAC is both tax-deductible and will go entirely to programming. Your planned 2010 sponsorship will help us continue the programs and our support for other arts groups. Please email or call me (802.868.3351) for more information or to donate.

Happy New Year!

–Dick Harper

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