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Connecticut Main Street Center: Arts Investment Key to Vibrant Cities

  • Connecticut Main Street Center says arts and cultural organizations, which were hit hard by the COVID-19 pandemic, were more likely to endure pandemic conditions if their community had pre-existing support structure in place
  • A blog post offers tips on how cities and towns can support their arts and cultural organizations moving forward
  • The Connecticut Arts Alliance has advocated that municipalities dedicate 1 percent of their American Rescue Plan funds to supporting arts and cultural organizations in their community

Summary by Dirk Langeveld

Communities that had infrastructure in place to invest in and support their arts and cultural organizations were better able to support these entities during the COVID-19 pandemic. A recent blog post by the Connecticut Main Street Center says these communities were able to “mitigate some of the damage, tap into the arts and culture sector for community health & wellness, and begin to recover before others.”

The post cites Hartford and New Haven as examples of municipalities with strong pre-pandemic support for their arts businesses. It also offers advice on how other cities and towns can improve their own advocacy for these organizations to promote more vibrant communities, including:

  • Forming and strengthening relationships with Designated Regional Service Organizations, which partner with the Connecticut Office of Arts and Department of Economic and Community Development to provide marketing, technical assistance, and other support
  • Municipalities have the option of forming Cultural Districts that can be promoted as destinations for arts and cultural institutions and events
  • The Connecticut Arts Alliance is advocating that towns and cities dedicate at least 1 percent of the funds they receive through the American Rescue Plan to support arts and cultural organizations in their community

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