Southwest Missouri has a vibrant and growing arts community as there are countless events that organizations host year around throughout the area. From the Spiva Center for the Arts in downtown Joplin, to the events hosted by the Neosho Arts Council including Art Con scheduled to take place Saturday, February 8th. Also, art exhibits at Missouri Southern State’s Spiva Gallery, Stained Glass Theater and Bookhouse Theater to name a few. Perhaps the economic impact of the arts isn’t the first thing that comes to mind when you attend a performance hosted by Connect2Culture although it’s likely larger than you think.
Recently KRPS’s Fred Fletcher-Fierro spoke with C2C’s Community Arts Director Emily Frankoski about Missouri Citizens’ Day for the Arts taking place on Wednesday February 5th starting at 10 am. The one day annual event in Jefferson City focuses on the monetary impact of the arts throughout the state. According to Emily, you should attend if you’re an artist, part of an arts organization or somebody that just want to advocate on behalf of the arts. Online registration is both free and required.
Another aspect of the arts are the funds needed to support them and how they support the community. According the most recent economic impact report available from Americans for the Arts the economic impact of the nonprofit arts and culture industry in Southwest Missouri is likely larger than you think. According to the 2015 report in Joplin alone, 191 jobs were either created or sustained by arts and culture spending. And event related spending, excluding the cost of admission to the event raised $3.6 million dollars. Frankoski points out that this study was completed prior to Connect2Culture establishing their Curtains Up Series which hosts four nationally touring shows every year in Joplin. The next study is slated to take place in 2020 and be made available in 2021.