The last few months at the Arts Council of Sault Ste. Marie have been filled with excitement as we reorganize and prepare ourselves for great things to come. We have been working for the past several months on a business plan and strategic plan which are now ready for implementation.
The Council is working very closely with the local Community Development Corporation and has been in contact with both the Cultural Advisory Board and the Economic Development Corporation as we have developed these plans. In addition, as a result of our successful application for an Ontario Arts Council COMPASS grant, we have been able to hire NORDIK to assist us through a review of our governance policies. All of that work will be done and ready for presentation to our membership at our Annual General Meeting in 2016. We have also been working hard to develop a sustainable funding model which will allow us to become financially self-sustaining.
In the short term, we will continue to apply for a variety of grants and seek sponsorship from local businesses and Algoma District municipalities. Over the long term, we will seek to diversify our revenue stream by providing physical and virtual space for local artists and business support to develop and sell their work.
We are thrilled to announce our upcoming move from 369 Queen Street to Case’s Music at 636 Queen Street. This temporary new location will allow the Arts Council to pilot a “storefront” project that would see member artists sell their work in a well-known downtown location. It also provides the Arts Council with the opportunity to join many other arts and culture businesses who already live along this well-travelled section of Queen Street, while pursuing a permanent location. With Studio Dance Arts just down the street in one direction and the Sault Ste. Marie Museum down the street in the other, the Arts Council will be perfectly positioned where culture is happening!
The phone number, email address, and website will all remain unchanged to ensure that the Arts Council office can still be easily reached. Office hours will change slightly with office hours starting December 1, 2015 being 11am to 4pm daily, Tuesday through Friday for the interim of relocation to a permanent site. The Executive Director, Valerie King, will be busily working outside of these hours to plan and attend meetings and gatherings with our members. If you would like Valerie to attend your group gathering or arts organization meeting, please call the office at 705-945-9756 or email the Arts Council at [email protected]
If you are willing to help us move on Saturday, November 28th starting at 10am, please contact Valerie at the office. Many hands make light work (and the Arts Council Board Members will supply the pizza)!