Island Arts: Your Center for the Arts needs you

I think most everyone likes to feel needed, most of us are more than willing to help others and feel compassion towards those in need. On the other side of the coin, I observe that those in need find it hard to ask for help. We all want to be strong, we all want to be able to give and yet sometimes we have to be recipients.

I know I sound like a broken record, “We are so fortunate to have a community of arts here on Marco; luckier to have an 11,000 square foot center for the arts.” I truly believe in the value of the arts in our lives and its importance to our community. My broken record skips again, “Imagine your world without the arts; imagine Marco Island without the Art League, your Center for the Arts.”

This group of compassionate people has been part of our community for just short of 40 years! This community has made that happen. In the beginning there were only 19 members, now over 450 and a community of over 15,000! From the beginning the community was involved, the Mackle Brothers donated the first piece of land to the Art League in 1977 and in 1980 the first home for the arts was built.

Over the 40 years, the Art League has supported its community. In the past 7 years since its last renovation, they have grown youth programs, outreach events, arts opportunities and commitments to the community. As our own Don Farmer recently wrote, “the Center for the Arts is reminiscent of an old TV quiz show where a contestant could open several doors and see what was behind them.” As you peek behind each door it is important to understand anyone can take part in all the Center for the Arts has available. As American Express says, membership has its privileges, so yes you want to join, but you do not have to be a member to take part.

However we can only take part if the Art League Marco Island’s Center for the Arts is here. It’s like one of those things you tend to take for granted. Always there you don’t think about the possibility of it being gone; always there when you need it and happy to provide. After all it is an arts center and artists are some of the most compassionate people around.

Your Art League now needs you. Over the past two years, this non-profit has struggled with economic issues just like every other business and individual in our community. Throughout its history it has focused on providing and unfortunately, not until 2003 was there a focus put on ensuring when an Endowment Program was developed. However this endowment is still in its infancy and cannot provide a reserve yet for the center to pull from. This is where the compassion for your community and that natural feeling to want to help comes in. Anyone can help support the arts. Anyone can help support the center for the arts. Anyone can choose to become a member, become a sponsor, become a donor.

With an urgent appeal underway to raise $150,000.00, donations to the Art League Marco Island’s Center for the Arts a registered 501(c)3 non-profit organization, are tax deductible to the fullest extent of the law. You can join for as little as $95 a year; that’s less than $8 per month. You can take a class or underwrite a program to reduce the fees. You can be as creative as you want. The Art League just needs you.

Now there is very exciting news with all this too. As the Center for the Arts stays positive and proactive and prepares for an exciting future, an opportunity to raise the funds quickly has befallen them. A member of the Art League challenges you to make a donation of $1000.00 or more and they will match it dollar for dollar up to $10,000! That means your $1000.00 donation becomes $2000.00 for the Center for the Arts.

If you are one of those always willing to help, if you are one of those who has compassion for others in need, if you understand how much the Art League has given you or if you can see how much this Center for the Arts has to offer your community, then consider their future today.

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Comments » 1

DOBERMAN writes:

Very sad this has happened. I remember the Good Old Days at the Art League!The first childrens summer program, Charlie Horn, Kathy Madison, Adeline Gernhardt, well, I could go on. It was a very friendly group. The Art league had many people from the community promoting it. Could it be the internal make up of the Art League has changed that much? There are many people on Marco that are interested in the Arts, why do they choose not to support the Art League? mmm!

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