Archived Story

Be a part of AC4TA ‘Center Series’

Published 11:27am Thursday, January 19, 2012

It’s new, it’s exciting, it’s affordable and it’s yours. Enjoy world-class entertainment without a long drive after an event.

Not to long ago, A Center for the Arts board of directors and staff personnel agreed and voted on the following mission statement: To connect artists and audiences by providing the best possible arts experiences that inspire creativity, curiosity, imagination and learning.

The thought behind this choice for a mission statement is inclusion and ensuring the arts are firmly embedded in the fabric our community and surrounding region. Our vision continues to be that Fergus Falls be a hub and destination for the “arts.”

A Center for the Arts continues to strive to be inclusive to all patrons. It is vital to our mission and existence that every patron and performer has a barrier-free and wonderful experience at each and every event we present.

A Center for the Arts is adopting better business practices. We have started a more sustainable business model including revamping our rental policy, program ads, aggressive sponsorship program and raising some ticket prices. It is our intention to do more with less while increasing the quality of performances and patron experience.

Our commitment to arts education continues to be paramount to its mission. The following is an example of the commitment to lifelong learning provided by A Center for the Arts: three youth choirs being taught quarterly, youth theatre quarterly, summer community theatre which will be expanding throughout the year, and 12 free outdoor summer concerts in the park (three of which we are working on moving to downtown to help revitalize that area to citizens and tourists). We continue to collaborate with other community organizations.

For example: Fergus Falls Big Read with the library, Toast and Jelly Days with the Historical Society and Cyclone Days with the Historical Society.

Our relationship with the school district, M State and local dance companies remains strong.

Our lobby is used as a rotating gallery for area artists and just recently we did a Dr. Sketchy event on stage in conjunction with an art opening.

We will continue to work with the city and downtown businesses to revitalize the Fergus Falls downtown district. Each of our “Center Series” events has a community contact attached to it and we will continue to build relationships for collaborations.

The Fergus Falls community is rich with arts and it is important we share and collaborate — not saturate. It is our intent to present a major series of eight events, a holiday event, a summer in the park series, community theatre, children’s theatre by youth and present theatre for youth, and several additional shows throughout the 2012/13 season.

By decreasing the sheer volume of offerings we will be lowering our costs, increasing our revenue and continue to produce higher-quality events.

We will work on filling our 446 seats in-house for those signature events and work on collaborations with other entities sharing in the risk for additional events, i.e. M State, library, city, ISD 544, and the Otter Tail County Museum just to name a few.

This will allow us to offer our facility for more rentals potentially increasing an additional source of income.

We do believe we can offer a diversity of events at a price point affordable to patrons of our region and satisfy the arts need by offering fewer high quality events.

Through our new “Center Series,” A Center for the Arts will be benefited by an increase in attendance of patrons new and old, young and elderly, able bodied and persons who may need enhancements to enjoy our incredible offerings.

Series tickets will run $120 for adults and $40 for students and include all eight shows for which seating will be reserved.

Series tickets can be placed on a six-month payment plan, or longer but must be paid for by the first of September, running through August involving invoiced payments of only $20 per adult series and $6.67 per student series.

There will always be single night tickets available to our new series. The single night tickets will be “general admission” and cost $18 for adults and $5 for students.

The community will continue to benefit by being afforded the ability to interact with persons of different cultures, talents and creativity weather through workshops, run outs, meet and greets and/or performances.

In a nutshell, purchase our series for $120 per adult, save over $20 off individual series ticket prices, pick out your reserved seats, and know you have access to eight world class affordable events over nine months. You get the same seats for every event.

The seats are yours, if you cannot make an event or are a snow bird the seats are yours and we encourage you to give them to a friend or family member. AND you get first shot for your same seats or better for the 2013/14 Center Series.

Seating is first to sign up first pick of reserved seats.

So what are the “Center Series” events for 2012/13? To this end, on Feb. 10, at 6 p.m. A Center for the Arts is hosting a, free and open-to-the-public, hour-long event and reception announcing our new “Center Series” and this will be the first opportunity to pick your series reserved seats. We won’t even ask you for money at this event.

Come and listen to the wonderful lineup, have some treats, pick out your reserved seats and we will send a bill.

Remember once someone has reserved seats those seats are gone for the series and perhaps a generation.

Together we can create today’s memories while preserving yesterdays.

Michael Burgraff is the director of A Center for the Arts in downtown Fergus Falls.

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