Cultural Districts, Chambers to Partner With 2019 ArtWeek Festival

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Berkshire County, MA (December 19, 2018) – A diverse team of local organizations announced today that they have each been named as collaborators for the 2019 ArtWeek festival, celebrating the arts across the Commonwealth with hundreds of creative events from April 26 – May 5, 2019.

Applications for the festival are now available at artweekma.org. Featured events should be hands-on, interactive, or offer behind-the-scenes access to arts, culture, and the creative process. Events may be submitted by individual artists, informal groups, non-profit organizations, or businesses, and there is no fee to apply as an Event Host. The early bird deadline to submit an ArtWeek event is January 11; the final deadline is February 22, 2019. Examples of previous events can also be found online.

As part of the Spring 2019 festival, ArtWeek will be working with over 100+ statewide, regional and local partners, including multiple organizations in Berkshire County recently named as collaborators. In the Berkshires, the Downtown Great Barrington Cultural District, North Adams Cultural District, Upstreet Cultural District and Artswalk in Pittsfield, the Williamstown Chamber of Commerce, as well as
Art Lenox and the Lenox Chamber of Commerce have all signed on as Community Partners. 1Berkshire and Berkshire Young Professionals are serving as Regional Collaborators in Western Massachusetts.

Through this innovative festival, each partner will be able to spotlight Berkshire County’s local creative economy, cultural treasures, and artistic assets.

“As a brand-new Cultural District, this was a perfect opportunity for us to serve the community,” said Karin Watkins, co-chair of the Downtown Great Barrington Cultural District which received its designation earlier this fall. “We can encourage participation among our district stakeholders and neighbors, and then use our district’s communication tools to promote the festival itself when the time comes next spring.”

Plans are also underway for each of these local and regional partners to coordinate their promotion of ArtWeek in order to better leverage Berkshire County participation in the festival.

“Last year, Western Massachusetts offered 50 events during ArtWeek. We believe we can feature at least that many in Berkshire County alone with the right coordination and the addition of new Community Partners,” said Jen Glockner, Director of Cultural Development in Pittsfield and coordinator for the Upstreet Cultural District.

Those considering submitting an event to the 2019 festival lineup will receive considerable free promotion as Event Hosts, both locally and through ArtWeek’s “Lead Champions”. Both the Mass Cultural Council and the Massachusetts Office of Travel & Tourism will continue their support of ArtWeek for 2019, helping to fuel the creative economy by featuring the festival in their own marketing of Massachusetts.

The Berkshire County group of partners will be working in the coming weeks to brainstorm ways to provide support to Event Hosts within the region. “1Berkshire is happy to again be collaborating with our creative economy for ArtsWeek. This is a great way to showcase all the Berkshires has to offer and attract visitors during a slower time of the year. I look forward to seeing even more venues participate in 2019.” stated Lindsey Schmid, Director of Marketing at 1Berkshire.

“We’ll make use of our social media accounts, websites, and e-newsletters to present a wide range of audiences with information about ArtWeek 2019, said Suzy Helme, Director of Community Events in North Adams. “The more we can include from around the Berkshires, the more appealing this festival will be to residents, visitors, and second-home owners.”

ArtWeek expanded into Western Massachusetts in 2018. Previously a Boston-based event, the festival opened up applications to all of Massachusetts for the first time last year, and a remarkable 130 cities, town and neighborhoods participated. In 2018, over 60% of events were free and all were affordable. ArtWeek events now span the Commonwealth’s six regions: Greater Boston, North of Boston, South of
Boston, Cape & Islands, Central Massachusetts and Western Massachusetts. ArtWeek is presented by Highland Street Foundation and produced by the Boch Center.

“We are thrilled to have organizations like those in the Berkshires partnering with ArtWeek this season for our second annual statewide festival,” said Josiah A. Spaulding, Jr., President & CEO of the Boch Center. “We launched ArtWeek in Boston in 2013 to bring the mission of the Boch Center literally outside of our theatres’ walls and are thrilled with the amount of growth and excitement the festival has generated. ArtWeek has and will continue to invite curious minds to experience arts, culture, and creativity in new – and sometimes unexpected – ways. We’re very proud that ArtWeek helps to shine the spotlight on arts and culture as a driving force in the economy on a local, regional and state level.”

For more information on ArtWeek, visit www.artweekma.org.
About ArtWeek: Presented by Highland Street Foundation and produced by the Boch Center, ArtWeek is an annual award-winning innovative festival featuring, in its most recent year, more than 525 unique and creative experiences that are hands-on, interactive or offer behind-the-scenes access to artists or the creative process. Expedia.com, USA Today and Forbes have recognized ArtWeek as a travel destination event.

ArtWeek was born in Boston in 2013 and now serves over 130 communities across Massachusetts as the signature nonprofit community program of the Center. Lead Champions are the Mass Cultural Council and Massachusetts Office of Travel & Tourism; sponsors include Mass Cultural Council (Creative Communities Sponsor), the Greater Boston Convention and Visitors Bureau, and WCVB Channel 5.

To learn more about our collaborators as well as about the festival and its growth, visit www.artweekma.org.

About Highland Street Foundation: Since its establishment in 1989, Highland Street Foundation has donated more than $180 million to many worthy non-profit organizations. It is committed to addressing the needs and concerns of children and families primarily in Massachusetts and California specifically in the areas of education, housing, mentoring, health care, environment and the arts. To learn more about Highland Street Foundation, please visit www.highlandstreet.org.

About the Boch Center: The Boch Center is one of the nation’s leading nonprofit performing arts institutions and a guardian of the historic Wang and Shubert Theatres. As New England’s largest cultural venue, the Boch Center is home to theater, classical and popular music, dance, comedy, opera, Broadway musicals, family entertainment, and more. Located in Boston’s historic Theater District, the Boch Center also offers a diverse mix of educational and community outreach initiatives, including the City Spotlights Leadership Program and ArtWeek;
collaborates with artists and local nonprofit arts organizations; preserves historic venues; and acts as a champion for Greater Boston’s arts and cultural community. Learn more at bochcenter.org.

About the Mass Cultural Council: The Mass Cultural Council is a state agency that promotes excellence, inclusion, education, and diversity
in the arts, humanities, and sciences to foster a rich cultural life for all Massachusetts residents and contributes to the vitality of our communities and economy. The Council pursues this mission through a wide range of grants, initiatives, and advocacy for artists, communities, organizations, and schools. Mass Cultural Council also runs the Massachusetts Cultural Facilities Fund in partnership with MassDevelopment. For more information, please visit www.massculturalcouncil.org.

About the Massachusetts Office of Travel and Tourism: MOTT’s mission is to promote Massachusetts as both a leisure and business travel destination for domestic and international markets and to contribute to the growth of the Commonwealth’s economy. MOTT works closely with 16 regional tourism councils across the state, and with larger tourism alliances such as Discover New England and BrandUSA. For more information on visiting Massachusetts, go to massvacation.com.

About 1Berkshire: 1Berkshire is a county-wide organization focused on economic development and promotion of the region as a preferred place to visit, to live, and to grow a business. It provides programs that connect businesses with each other and with potential customers, as well works to develop future leaders and support entrepreneurs. For more information, visit 1Berkshire.com.