Fall 2022 will be an exciting time for Spiva, also a period to reflect on the non-profit’s history

Time is winding in the Cosgrove building for the Spiva Center for the Arts in Joplin. The non-profit will move into its new home, the Cornell Complex, in about two months. KRPS’s Fred Fletcher-Fierro has more.

The Cosgrove building

The Cosgrove, named after writer, philanthropist, and political worker Henrietta C. Cosgrove has been the home of the Spiva Center for the Arts since 1996.

Before that, Spiva’s called Missouri Southern State University home for 29 years, starting in 1967. Over 100 years ago, in 1914, the city of Joplin moved some of its offices into the Cosgrove.

Four years later, in 1918, residents approved an $18,500 addition to existing city offices, allowing them to be all in one location once again. Executive Director of the Spiva Heather Lesmeister says the Cornell Complex will enable new opportunities.

“We’re encouraging the community to let us know what they want to see in their Spiva. We work here; we’re able to facilitate those things. But it’s a community arts organization. So what are the gaps? What are the things that people in the community want to see?”

Spiva will hold a public open house at the Cornell Complex on Friday, November 12.


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