Gwinnett arts groups come together

Representatives from 14 Gwinnett arts groups came together Sept. 2 in the Children's Museum of the Hudgens Center to show their commitment to the area and to one another. Also among the attendees were Judy Waters of the Community Foundation for Northeast Georgia and Hudgens Center acting Executive Director Teresa Osborne.

Leading the meeting was Hudgens Center Board Chairman Stan Hall. The Hudgens Center has been making concerted efforts recently to reach out to the other arts organizations in the community, offering to share ideas and help cross-promote.

Many topics were discussed, but the biggest announcement came from Hall when he told the group there were plans being made to create a large event at the Gwinnett Performing Arts Center for Jan. 31. This event would be an opportunity for 501(c)(3) performing arts groups to participate in an evening of entertainment, showcasing their talents and embracing the idea of an arts community which has so much to offer. Visual artists will also be showcased.

Hall called for ideas on how the Hudgens Center could better serve the other arts organizations in the area. One idea was to develop an area within the Center where literature could be available on all Gwinnett arts groups and artists. A kiosk or other type of display will be developed for this purpose.

Another announcement involved the Grassroots Grants' which the Hudgens Center had been in charge of administrating for the Georgia Council for the Arts to Gwinnett groups with smaller annual budgets for a number of years. This program is being restructured, with areas of multiple arts councils being developed throughout the state. Plans are under way to revamp this process.

Another worthy idea was that the groups attending and other nonprofit arts organizations, and visual artists, should come together at least once a quarter to discuss more ideas and how to strengthen the Gwinnett arts.

Judy Waters also spoke to the group, discussing how the Gwinnett Chamber of Commerce Partnership Gwinnett program had developed a committee that identified the need for enhancing lifestyle through the arts and making a strong case for supporting the arts.

Those groups represented were: Button Theatre, Gwinnett Ballet Theatre, Gwinnett Community Band, Gwinnett Community Orchestra, Kudzu Art Zone, Norcross Arts Alliance, Gio"Vairs Gallery, Southern Colors Art Association, Lionheart Theatre, Gwinnett Young Singers, Stone Mountain Chorus, Gwinnett Choral Guild, Northeast Atlanta Ballet and Anita's Arts Cool.

The Gwinnett Daily Post was also represented by staff writer Deanna Allen.

The Hudgens Center representatives also let it be known that they are searching for an education director.

For more information about this meeting and the Gwinnett Arts initiative in progress, call Teresa Osborne at the Hudgens Center at 770-623-6002.