SIKESTON - If you have an idea involving some art and culture for this area, your time has come.
Area residents are invited to participate in an exchange of ideas and opinions about the Missouri Arts Council's role in supporting arts activities in the region during a meeting scheduled for 6:30 p.m. Monday at the Sikeston Area Higher Education Center.
A division of the Missouri Department of Economic Development, the Missouri Arts Council, provides more than $5 million in assistance to nonprofit organizations throughout Missouri.
"They have monies available for funding art in your community," said Terri Matthews, administrator for Sikeston Missouri Arts Inc. "In order for them to plan their year and make the money available, they have to know what we're interested in."
"This is an opportunity for the citizens of Missouri to let us know about the needs in their communities, and how a state arts agency can help address those needs," said Norree Boyd, MAC's executive director, in a press release. "I look forward to hearing ideas and suggestions for us to consider as we create the 'road map' for MAC to follow."
The meeting is open to all members of the public.
Representatives from area art groups, tourism councils and chambers of commerce from Dexter to Charleston are expected to attend the meeting as MAC officials including Boyd will not only be gathering input but also advising those attending about grants available to communities through the MAC.
"We are pleased that MAC asked Sikeston Missouri Arts to host this strategic planning meeting for our area," said Matthews.
Matthews said SMARTS gets its community art grant through MAC and there are other grants available to the community that most people are not aware of.
Area school teachers are encouraged to come and as information about educational grants offered through MAC will be presented. "The Missouri Arts Council has money allotted for educational grants," said Matthews. "They want teachers to know that the money is out there."
Matthews said in addition to providing a forum for exchanging ideas with MAC officials, previous MAC meetings have been a great resource for those interested in promoting the arts. "It's a good place for people to network - you get to know what works in other communities," said Matthews. "It's a great opportunity to learn from each other."
The Missouri Arts Council board consists of 15 volunteer citizens from across the state appointed by the governor to provide direction in policymaking and oversight for programming.
For more information call Matthews at 471-3888.