Cultivating Arts & Culture for the Belfast Area

The Belfast Creative Coalition (BCC) was formed in 2012 through a Maine Arts Commission Creative Communities = Economic Development grant. Our mission is to cultivate arts and culture in order to attract people and businesses to the Belfast area. As a creative place-making initiative, the primary result of our efforts has been to provide a voice and vision equally to many diverse constituencies, including individuals, organizations and creative businesses as well as cultural micro-businesses, creative entrepreneurs, and isolated and underserved artists, whose livelihoods are enhanced by shared promotional strategies, professional training opportunities and a strong, visible, centralized, website and directory.

BCC is built on a spirit of creative collaboration and welcomes members from throughout Waldo County that help to sustain and support our mission. We are fortunate to work within a vibrant community of artists across the creative spectrum and our organizational membership is made up of writers, poets, soap-makers, glassblowers, woodworkers, cooks, painters, and more. The depth and breadth of their shared experience is a treasure trove of knowledge and a key element to continued economic vibrancy.

By unifying local efforts, BCC promotes arts + cultural events through: the BCC website, a public calendar, networking opportunities, strategic planning initiatives, and streamlined promotions. With each, we seek to market Waldo County arts and culture locally and regionally by creating materials that market Belfast’s three gems of art, local food & beautiful land. In this way, we are able to facilitate “the business of art and culture” by fostering an entrepreneurial spirit amongst creatives.

 

BCC’s core activities include:

Maintaining the Online Directory + Event Listings

BCC’s website hosts the public calendar and directory of the creative sector in Waldo County and with over 700 other local arts- and culture-related events listed on our website in 2016 alone, we’re proud to say that there is something to do or see every day in Waldo County.

Wether you’re looking for an inside peek at a local artist’s studio or hoping to plan a day trip to the area, our website is designed to make exploring Waldo County’s creative community easy and accessible. In addition to listings, we’re also proud to feature a series of member profiles that celebrate stories of creativity and entrepreneurship in our community. If you have any questions about what to do or see while you’re in the Belfast area, please be in touch!

Hosting the Monthly Calendar Sync

To coordinate Belfast area cultural efforts, the BCC host a monthly Calendar Sync meeting. This meeting is made up of the core group of the BCC members that includes the area’s major non-profits and event organizers, such as: the Belfast Free Library; the Belfast Co-op; the University of Maine Hutchinson Center; the City of Belfast; Waterfall Arts; Our Town Belfast; Belfast Arts; individual galleries and musical performers; and many others.

The meeting offers a chance to share upcoming events over coffee and to hear what everyone is planning for the coming months. If you have an event to promote or would just like to learn more about arts + culture activities in our area, please join! Meetings are the last Wednesday of the month at the Bagel Cafe in downtown Belfast from 9-10am.

Facilitating Collaborative Marketing Opportunities

BCC regularly creates, supports and organizes advertising opportunities that promote the arts and cultural events of Belfast to celebrate our region’s creative vitality and attract people and business to our area. We are continuously exploring new ideas and opportunities to strengthen the creative economy and welcome ideas or energies that support that mission.

That’s not all!

In addition to these core activities, BCC hosts the annual Cultivate Farm + Art Tour, the Fourth Friday Art Walk Series, and a professional development series. For more information on these events, please visit our program pages!

 

Our work is supported in part through the generosity of the City of Belfast, the Quimby Family Foundation, the Davis Foundation, the Elmina B. Sewall Foundation, Bangor Savings Bank, Front Street Shipyard, and Coyote Moon. Thank you to all who make serving our mission possible!

 

Board and Staff

BCC’s Board and Committees meets bimonthly and is composed of leaders from local non-profits, government and the community, including:

 

BCC Board President, Betty Johnson, Waldo County Commissioner

Vice-President, Thomas Kittredge – Director of Economic Development, City of Belfast

Treasurer (Interim), Betty Johnson – Waldo County Commissioner

 

BCC Board members:

Brenda Harrington – Adult Programming Coordinator, Belfast Free Library

Susan Hill – Collaborative Arts / Educator

Robin Jones – Director, Actor

Martha Piscuskas – Co-director, Waterfall Arts Program Director

Stacey White – Educator, Set Decorator, Writer

 

BCC’s team is comprised of three part-time staff members:

Interim Coordinator – Susan Hill

Julia Clapp – Membership Coordinator / Administrative Staff

Tony Chiodo – Staff Writer + Photographer

 

There are many ways to become involved:

  • Become a member today!
  • Support our work by making a one time or recurring tax-deductible donation
  • Post your Events to our online directory
  • Become a site on the Belfast Art Walk or the Cultivate: Farm & Art Tour
  • Participate in the Calendar Sync Meetings or Artist Networking Nights.
  • Volunteer at area events our in our office
  • Consider joining the Board or Committee
  • “Like” us on Facebook and sign up for our monthly Newsletter on the home page of our website

 

BCC’s committees include the Oversight Committee, the Marketing Committee, the Belfast Art Walk Committee, and the Cultivate Committee – these committees are made up of additional ‘creatives’ and organizations, including: Our Town Belfast, Waterfall Arts, Maine Farmland Trust, local gallery owners, and individual artists.

To find out more, please contact us at  info@belfastcreativecoalition.org

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