By Enola Gay Mathews
Winnsboro Center for the Arts had plenty to report at its annual meeting on February 9th. Despite the pandemic and having to curtail its entertainment series temporarily, the WCA has been able to continue to offer a variety of activities largely due to grant support, including a Shuttered Venue grant.
Educational opportunities such as music and art lessons and a variety of workshops have become increasingly popular. This year’s Art & Wine Festival was the largest yet with around 5,000 visitors. An Open Mic Night was added in 2021 which has become a big hit with the community.
September 18, 2021, marked the 20th anniversary of the WCA as a non-profit organization, and the board thanked Tiffany Tillema for producing a commemorative video, “20 Years in the Making.” As fundraising efforts are renewed for their much-needed additional space on Market Street, the board hopes the video will help to educate the community about its diverse offerings and its importance to Winnsboro.
In the video, board president and acting executive director, Mary White, speculates about what the next 20 years may bring. At the meeting, she emphasized that they now have a small staff and have established financial procedures which help to make it a sustainable organization.
Plans for 2022 include building stronger collaborations with the schools, with other local organizations and with the community-at-large. Seventeen school districts are expected to participate in this year’s student art competition; a community read is planned in conjunction with this year’s book festival; a merchants’ Sip & Shop has been coordinated with Open Mic Night to bring more visitors downtown; and finally, concerts and theater are back in full swing!
White said, “We’re betting that the next 20 years will showcase a vibrant downtown with an Arts Center complex anchoring Winnsboro’s Cultural Arts District.” Stop by the WCA at 200 Market St. to see the plans and to make a donation. It’s an investment in the future of Winnsboro!