Arts In Summit County Looking For Creative Solutions To Stay At Home Orders
The Park City and Summit County Arts Council organized a remote meeting with all area arts organizations to craft a platform to creatively address ways to make it through the fiscal challenges caused by the county-wide stay at home order.
Executive Director of the Park City Summit County Arts Council Jocelyn Scudder is working with the Utah Cultural Alliance and the Utah Division of Arts and Museum’s to look at the economic impacts that began in mid-March when county events and gatherings came to a screeching halt. The Cultural Alliance is collecting data and using it to track the impacts of the statewide shut-down. Scudder says the loss of revenue in the arts economy in Utah is estimated at over $40 million with 4,000 jobs at risk.
“We did have an estimate loss of admissions revenue of $257,000 and an estimate loss of non-admissions revenue of over a million. So, that's based on local Summit County data. We had about 14 creative businesses and local organizations participate in this statewide survey.”
She is certain collaboration and creativity is the way forward. As arts leaders, she says they are creative and passionate, and they are best equipped to find productive ways to move to digital offerings.
“I know Park City film has come out with a really fun model where you can watch some of their films and if you follow Park City Film and get their newsletters, they tell you exactly how to engage. And you can actually pay to support the film and support Park City Film as well. Mountain Town Music is coming up with some fun ideas on how to stream live music, stream live concerts. Kimball Art Center is doing a lot of virtual classes and moving heavily to an online platform."
Scudder says people are turning to the arts more than ever and being creative, coming together and inspiring others is good for everyone’s mental wellbeing. She says it’s a time for the arts to shine.
“We've come out with a social media initiative called Art Connects Us. We're going to be sharing everything that our local arts organizations are doing digitally to make sure that reaching our community, to make sure that they're all feeling connected through the arts.”
Scudder says the outlook for arts is sobering and they’re anticipating severe financial losses resulting from the effects of COVID-19. They are closely following federal grant funding through the National Endowment for the Arts. The Summit County Council has asked Governor Gary Herbert to use emergency powers to suspend restrictions on sales tax revenue from the TRT-Transient Room Tax and the RAP-Recreation, Arts and Parks tax. Scudder says she will advocate for the arts organizations to receive any funds that would be redistributed.
“That pool of money is something art non-profits wants to be protective of and the last thing that our art nonprofits need is for existing pools of funding that we rely on to be taken away. We've been talking closely with our elected officials at the county level and county staff to advocate for those funds to not be impacted in a negative way.”
Follow PCSC arts on Instagram and Facebook to find out what the local arts organizations are doing to engage and entertain the community.