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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 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!

Arts & Cultural Alliance Earns MCACA Grant for Jackson County Art News

MCACAArts & Cultural Alliance of Jackson County has been awarded a $1,400 grant from the State of Michigan Council for Arts and Cultural Affairs (MCACA). The grant was awarded through the MCACA peer review process and was one of 575 applications to compete for MCACA fiscal year 2018 funding.The MCACA grant will fund outreach efforts, information sharing, and promotion of artists and cultural organizations throughout Jackson County through ACAJC’s “Art News” email newsletter, and paid social media promotions. The “young leader grant” lasts through September 30, 2018.“Thanks to this generous MCACA grant, the Arts & Cultural Alliance will reach more people, of all ages and backgrounds, helping to spread the word about local arts and cultural opportunities,” Kate Schwartz, ACAJC’s board chair, says. “Our goal is to build public access to the arts, especially in rural and underserved areas of Jackson County.”Organizations receiving a MCACA grant award are required to match those funds with other public and private dollars. Jackson County residents can make a donation to ACAJC at also receives significant volunteer support from the community, including its marketing committee. Kaiti McDonough, a young leader in Jackson that will spearhead outreach efforts, is the subject of the grant application, and serves on the ACAJC marketing committee.Jackson County residents can sign up for “Art News," and follow ACAJC on Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter.The MCACA peer review process allows for each grant application to be competitively considered by a panel of in-state and out-of-state arts and culture professionals. This ensures the taxpayers, who support this project through legislative appropriations, and all other visitors or residents in Michigan will have access to the highest quality arts and cultural experiences.A complete list of grant awards around the state is available by contacting MCACA at (517) 241-4011, or by visiting the MCACA website.

Important Changes to ACAJC Membership

For the past 15 years, the Arts & Cultural Alliance of Jackson County (ACAJC) has supported the creative sector in Jackson by offering artists and creatives paid memberships.In an effort to bring our services to more people, the ACAJC Board has decided to discontinue paid memberships, and to continue on with the support of donations, so that we can offer our services to all artists and creatives living and working in Jackson County.We appreciate and value the artists and creatives who have been dues-paying members over the years, and we will continue to provide support and advocacy for the arts across the county.Individuals interested in being a booster for the arts are encouraged to make a tax-deductible donation to the Arts & Cultural Alliance of Jackson County. We hope you will participate in future Outreach Committee meetings to help us learn how to advocate and support the arts in our community.Outreach Committee meetings are held on the fourth Monday of every month at 6 p.m. at varying locations. If you would like to share ideas with the creative sector in Jackson, please attend the Outreach Committee meetings.To receive updates, including the location of the Outreach Committee every month, please send an email to:

Arts & Cultural Alliance Launches ‘20s Themed Jackson Architectural Tour

Jackson Architecture TourArts and Cultural Alliance of Jackson County’s (ACAJC) will celebrate Jackson buildings during its “The '20s Roar into Jackson” architectural tour."The '20s Roar into Jackson" tour, taking place Saturday, Sept. 16, is a self-paced walking tour that highlights the 1920s historic architecture in downtown Jackson. The tour can be completed at a leisurely pace in about 40 minutes.“Jackson’s architecture is worthy of discovery and contemplation,” says Kate Schwartz, ACAJC’s chair. “We encourage the community to get out, look up, and learn about their city.”The tour, sponsored by Anchor Initiative, Experience Jackson and the Jackson District Library, will feature a special presentation by Jeannette Woodard of Woodard & Associates, Architects. Woodard will give two presentations at 10 a.m. and 2 p. at the Jackson District Library’s Carnegie Branch."The 1920’s were a decade of great change for the World, the United States, Michigan, and Jackson," says Jeannette Woodard of Woodard & Associates, Architects. "That dynamic is reflected in our built environment, our art, and our architecture."Docents will be stationed throughout the day at the historic buildings from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m.The cost is $12 per person, $8 for ACAJC members.Reserve your place today.

Call for Artists: Welcome to the Irish Hills

Irish Hills TowersArts and Cultural Alliance of Jackson County announces a call to artists for mural proposals on the wall in front of Irish Hills Towers (8433 US-12, Onsted, MI 49265).Submissions are free to members of the Arts and Cultural Alliance of Jackson County, and $10 for non-members. Brooklyn Irish Hills Chamber of Commerce (BIHCC) will pay a stipend of $500 to the artist or team of artists of the accepted mural proposal to cover labor. BIHCC will reimburse a maximum of $200 for materials. The Chamber will also supply a press release, plaque on the wall recognizing the artist, and an unveiling ceremony.This opportunity is for family-friendly, original artwork that is representative of the Irish Hills and includes the statement “Welcome to the Irish Hills.” BIHCC asks that artists keep in mind that viewers will be in cars driving by at 55 mph, so the words must be central and easy to spot.Regarding the Wall

  • The wall is on property owned by the Irish Hills Historical Society, in front of the Irish Hills Towers.
  • The wall was primed last fall and is approximately 60 feet long and 8 feet tall.
  • Learn more about the history of the Towers.

Conditions of Entry

  • Any artist or team of artists to create a two-dimensional mural to be created in the fall of 2017.
  • Mural proposals may be executed in any medium that will withstand the four seasons of Michigan.
  • Mural proposals must be for artwork that covers at least 70% of the wall.

PoliciesArtists will retain the ownership of design ideas submitted with this application until a selection has been made and contract signed between the artist and the Brooklyn Irish Hills Chamber of Commerce.How to Enter

  • Email the following: your name, address, phone number, a narrative and design illustrating the concept is required for each submission. Include supplemental information such as medium, and approximate dimensions of the proposed mural.
  • Supporting materials, including images and examples of other exhibitions/opportunities that the artist has participated in, are required. References for earlier projects are encouraged.
  • Please label your image files as follows: Artist name, a period, and what the file is. For example: Smith.muraldesign.jpg or Smith.muralnarrative.pdf

Payment for Non-Member Submissions[gravityform id="5" title="false" description="false"]Important DatesSeptember 1, 2017 - Deadline for submissionsSeptember 13, 2017 - Artists notified of acceptance or decline of entries via emailOctober 13, 2017 - Completion of MuralQuestionsE-mail

NewsDave Lawrencenews