evanstARTs is holding two COMMUNITY MEETINGS to announce RESULTS from the Arts Survey and community conversations and to PRESENT Recommendations and a VISION for the ARTS in Evanston.

The meetings will be held on TUESDAY, JANUARY 15, 2013 at 10:30 a.m. to 12 Noon at the Music Institute of Chicago (1490 Chicago Ave.) OR 7:30 p.m. to 9 p.m. in the Parasol Room at the Lorraine H. Morton Civic Center (2100 Ridge)

The meetings will be preceded, 30 minutes prior to each meeting, by a performance by Evanston artists.  Meetings will start promptly at the designated times. 

What is evanstARTs?

evanstARTs is a community collaboration to gather public input on the arts in Evanston.  It is the first joint effort of the City of Evanston, the Evanston Community Foundation, and the Evanston Arts Council.  The project seeks to identify the diverse perspectives on arts and culture from community members who care about the arts in Evanston, whether they are artists, patrons, business professionals, parents or students or simply curious or concerned about the arts. The initiative includes public listening sessions, an online survey, stakeholder interviews, focus groups and more in order to gather ideas, opinions and recommendations about the future of the arts in Evanston.

Why is Evanston undertaking such an effort?

Evanston is not unique in its search to identify economic opportunities created by a strong arts community. Throughout the U.S., communities are looking closely at the arts experiences they offer to residents and visitors alike. It is clear that the arts provide more to communities than audience experiences and income for artists. The arts inspire, enrich, entertain and enlighten, but also serve as an important economic engine for Evanston.

The project is a collaborative effort of the City of Evanston, the Evanston Community Foundation, and the Evanston Arts Council. The project is guided by a ten member steering committee, led by Judy Kemp, former chair of the Evanston Community Foundation.  Other members are: Sara Schastok, President and CEO, Evanston Community Foundation (ECF); Wally Bobkiewicz, Evanston City Manager; Judy Aiello, former Assistant City Manager and member of the ECF Board;  Jeff Cory, Director of Cultural Arts Division , City of Evanston, Joan Gunzberg, former Executive Director of the Arts and Business Council of Chicago and ECF Board member; Heidi Bloom, Manager of Foundation Relations and Donor Communications, The Cradle Foundation and Co-Chair of the Evanston Arts Council,  and Anne Berkeley, arts activist and Arts Council Co-Chair.  The project is coordinated by arts consultant Amina Dickerson, who is assisted in this effort by Evanston native Amanda Carlson.