Farewell fRom Kate Manville-Schwartz

Dear Friends, 

I am leaving here today knowing the Arts and Cultural Alliance is in good hands.  Serving for the last five years has been a pleasure and a fantastic learning experience.

I served first as a board member, and then the Board Chair, and for the last year, I have been charged with a special task of fund development, project hand-off, and training.  I’m thankful for the people that currently surround and encourage #artsinjackson and I know that the good work that ACAJC does to bring unity and equal encouragement to all Arts Organizations in Jackson County will continue.

Over the last year, my personal art endeavor, Kate’s Art School, has taken off in a great and exciting way, but with that comes sacrifice. It would be a disservice to continue to lead ACAJC, while stretched thin with my school in the Irish Hills.

My sincerest wish for everyone involved is that you all continue to experience success in marketing and promoting the arts opportunities that exist so greatly in this county, and to have nothing but great results in each completed project!

Your Loving Friend in the Arts,

Kate Manville-Schwartz

David Lawrence
Arts & Cultural Alliance Opens CNB Branch with Local Art
Betty Kay Price, paintings of iconic Jackson churches.

Betty Kay Price, paintings of iconic Jackson churches.

The Arts & Cultural Alliance of Jackson County (ACAJC) worked with local artists to create commissioned artwork featuring the culture of Jackson County in County National Bank's newest downtown branch.

This winter and spring, ACAJC put out a call to artists for CNB’s opening of their 215 S Jackson St. branch, receiving dozens of submissions and selecting seven finalists. 

ACAJC’s art project manager Kate Manville-Schwartz managed the process for CNB, and helped the bank select the Jackson-area artists:

Art634 drawing by Nicole Cure.

Art634 drawing by Nicole Cure.

  • Nicole Cure

  • Craig Cossey

  • Coley Kennedy

  • Betty Kay Price

  • Kenny Price

  • Sharon Sunday

  • Rachel Veramay

CNB purchased the art at the artists’ listed prices. 

"We were so proud to display the work of these Jackson County artists," says Kate Schwartz. "CNB is a great partner, and they support our community in so many ways, including hiring artists at fair prices."

“We are a community bank and are looking for ways to support our communities,” says Kelly Jensen, CNB’s Vice President of Branch Administration. “This was a win win for everyone: we are showcasing our Jackson community, and supporting local artists as well as other local businesses that assisted with this entire project.”

Jensen says ACAJC’s support - from hosting the call to artists to advising CNB on art styles appropriate for the branch - was appreciated.

“We definitely accomplished our goals and are very pleased with the outcome,” he says.

David Lawrence
Arts & Cultural Alliance Celebrates Successful Museum Day 2019

In its first year as organizer of Jackson County’s Museum Day, the Arts & Cultural Alliance of Jackson County doubled attendance at many local museums, in its partnership with Experience Jackson. 

Nearly 3,500 art and culture appreciators visited museums from across the county on May 11, an increase from 1,600 visitors at last year’s Museum Day activities. In 2017, 1,800 visitors participated in Museum Day.

"We have a strong and diverse set of local museums in Jackson County," says Lori Gordon, ACAJC chair. "We are so proud to have put extra promotional effort into this year’s event, and we saw that extra effort pay off."

Participating museums included:

  • Mann House (Concord)

  • Cambridge Junction Historic State Park and Walker Tavern (Brooklyn)

  • Ye Old Carriage Shop Auto Museum (Spring Arbor)

  • Waterloo Farm Museum and Dewey School Museum (Grass Lake)

  • Hanover-Horton Historical Society (Hanover)

  • Tompkins Historical Stewart Museum (Rives Junction)

  • Cell Block 7 Prison Museum (Jackson)

  • Lost Railway Museum (Grass Lake)

  • Ella Sharp Museum (Jackson)

Experience Jackson, the organization previously and solely responsible for Museum Day, assisted ACAJC with this year’s marketing efforts, including hosting event details on its website.

Museum Day 2019

Jackson County Museum Day 2019 will be held on May 11. Participating museums throughout Jackson County will be open to the public free of charge. Some locations will keep it low-key with an “open-house style” reception and self-guided tours while others are hosting festivals, child-friendly activities, historical demonstrations and providing guided tours.

Please click here for a print friendly copy of museum opportunities available that day and click here for a 2019 Museum Day Flyer.

Museum Day is a wonderful opportunity to check museums off your bucket list and discover little pieces of Michigan history waiting to be uncovered in Jackson, Michigan.

The 2019 Museum Day Participants include:

  • Cambridge Junction Historic State Park and Walker Tavern

  • Cell Block 7 Prison Museum

  • Ella Sharp Museum

  • Hanover-Horton Area Historical Society

  • Lost Railway Museum

  • Mann House

  • Tompkins Historical Stewart Museum

  • Waterloo Farm Museum and Dewey School Museum

  • Ye Old Carriage Shop Auto Museum

David Lawrence
2018 Year In Review
Bright Walls Mural Festival - Jackson, Michigan

Bright Walls Mural Festival - Jackson, Michigan

We believe, and we hope you do also, that arts and culture enrich a community and help stimulate the minds of the young, to the not so young. A perfect example is the recent Bright Walls Mural Festival that Jackson Young Professionals organized. People of all ages enjoyed visiting downtown, during the festival, to see artists at work, at such a large scale, and each with their individual style. Through your financial support we can continue in our mission to strengthen, support, and promote the arts and culture throughout Jackson County.Your Arts and Cultural Alliance of Jackson County continues its work for both art and cultural organizations and individual artists. This volunteer group in the past year has:

  • Provided fiduciary services for Bright Walls Mural Festival

  • Produced the 4th Annual Arts in Jackson Day, a community-wide advocacy day

  • Advocated for local architecture, by organizing the Stained Glass Windows Architecture Tour

  • Securing artwork by local artists in the new County National Bank branch, downtown

  • Conducting a survey to determine how locals enjoy art and what their barriers are for enjoying art

  • Sponsored Soiree Macabre, a local Halloween themed Art Exhibition

  • Promoted individual artists as well as arts organizations through paid social media posts, reaching more than 68,000 Jackson residents

Please consider a donation to help ensure that the Arts and Culture programming continues here in our hometown. You can donate online or mail a check to:

Arts and Cultural Alliance of Jackson County

P.O. Box 1463

Jackson, Michigan, 49204

Thank you for your support!

(Originally posted to our monthly email newsletter)

NewsDave Lawrencenews, update
Architecture Tour 2018 - Thank You

Dear Community Partners and Board,

First of all, thank you to Anchor Initiative for being our Title Sponsor.  Your support really helped "Stained Glass: An Architecture Tour" fly, and it definitely helped to serve your purpose of bringing people downtown.  It was so nice to see people wandering the sidewalks today, even in the rain.

When comparing last year’s numbers to this year’s numbers, although we were more successful fundraising this year, our attendance was down.  We assume that it was due to the rain.  Last year, our first lecture (10 a.m.) was the largest lecture, and this year, it was the smallest.  Ten o’clock was when it rained the hardest today.

Nevertheless, ACAJC feels really good about this event.  A big thank you to all of our docents for your wonderful work, and to the churches and County Building for having your doors open and a volunteer or staff person at your buildings all day. We received a lot of nice feedback from the event.  People loved engaging with congregational members who obviously love their church so much.  It was truly a touching event, having so many volunteers so emotionally involved in the buildings that they were presenting on.

Also thank you to the County Tower Building.  People were truly impressed that a government entity had their doors open to the public on a Saturday.  That’s true civil service!

This event engaged with the creative sector in a really good way.  I love when history can be presented through the arts.  While walking around today, I heard docents throwing in historical information about their organs, pews, statues, and more.  It was a win for the creative sector of Jackson County all the way around.

And speaking of history, thank you so much to Jeannette Woodard and Barbara Kreuger for all the content on Stained Glass.  Your research, enthusiasm and passion for the subject matter at hand, was inspiring.  The stained glass demonstration was impressive, and enlighting.  All of the articles that Barb brought to support her presentation was helpful.  I truly believe that people did not leave without learning an impressive amount on the artform, from it’s purpose to it’s process.

Thank you to Jackson District Library for allowing us to borrow your wonderful staff people to man our reception desk, and for the use of your portable microphone.  Also, we appreciated your help this week to promote “Iggy Peck, Architect,” a children’s book about architecture, with the intention of helping us reach a youth crowd for the event.  Also, thank you to Ella Sharp Museum for supplying volunteers to provide a craft for children.  It is part of ACAJC’s 2018 strategic plan to make sure there are children’s activities at our events moving forward.  This was the first time that we made sure to include a youth component, and it certainly has room to grow.

Thank you to Jackson Community Foundation for the Arts and Literacy Grant, which helped to support our Marketing Committee’s job, which was to promote this event.  Marketing Committee did a wonderful job.  After the event, I had dinner with my parents who both said that they heard the event promoted everywhere.  That is especially interesting to me, coming from my Dad, that he noticed at all :)  Mallette Blum did a beautiful job with the brochures, and Elaine Lok's photos are a work of art!  Great Lakes Graphics did an awesome job with the printing...as always!

Some impromptu conversations today with guests and volunteers, leads us to the idea that we may be able to promote some follow up materials for further reading about stained glass.  It’s nice to feel like the community reached that level of engagement when we’re being asked for additional information.  I will make sure to follow-up on these ideas.

On behalf of ACAJC, I wish to extend our gratitude to all involved, for another successful event!

Best Wishes,

Kate Manville-Schwartz

Event Chair

Stained Glass the Highlight Of Architectural Tour of Jackson

Jackson Architectural TourArts and Cultural Alliance of Jackson County’s (ACAJC) upcoming architecture tour will celebrate stained glass throughout downtown Jackson.This self-paced walking tour, sponsored by Anchor Initiative, highlights stained glass within architecture in the downtown area on Saturday, August 25. The tour can be completed at a leisurely pace in about 40 minutes.“Jackson’s stained glass is primarily seen from the outside,” says Kate Schwartz, ACAJC’s chair. “Our tour lets Jackson residents see it from the inside of buildings, where it really shows off its luster.”The tour will kick-off with a special presentation by Jeannette Woodard of Woodard & Associates, Architects. Woodard will give three presentations at 10 a.m., noon, and 2 p.m. at the First Congregational Church at 120 N Jackson St.Docents will be stationed throughout the day at the historic buildings from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m.Cost is $8 per child (16 and under), $10 per adult.Additional support for the architectural tour comes courtesy of Jackson Community Foundation’s Art and Literacy Grant.

Take the Jackson County Arts & Culture Survey

The Arts & Cultural Alliance Community Plan Committee is working on an important information gathering survey.We are interested in your participation in art and cultural offerings in Jackson County. Your participation will help shape the future of important creative opportunities, and continue to contribute to the quality of life we enjoy here in Jackson County!Please take a few moments to complete this survey by Friday, May 25.Take the survey ⤇Feel free to share this link with anyone in your social media or email contact list that lives in Jackson County.Thanks in advance!