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Columbus, Nashville earn cultural district desigantions

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COLUMBUS – The Indiana Arts Commission announced today the addition of Columbus and Nashville to the State Cultural Districts Designation Program.

During its Quarterly Business Meeting today in Indianapolis, the Commission accepted the proposals from the City of Columbus and the Town of Nashville Arts and Entertainment Commission.

“These communities have embraced the arts and cultural resources as an integral part of their overall community, economic and cultural development,” Lewis C. Ricci, Executive Director of the Indiana Arts Commission, said in a press release. “The State Designation is an important tool for a community to use to capitalize on resources that encourage and expand economic prosperity and quality of life.”

Currently there is no funding associated with Statewide Cultural District designation. Benefits of the program include increased tourism marketing and economic activities that come with being part of a branded program with a statewide emphasis, and a potential collaboration with the Indiana Artisan program.

By definition, a cultural district is a well-recognized, labeled, mixed-use area of a community, in which high concentrations of cultural assets serve as the anchor. Indiana Statewide Cultural Districts promote the exploration of and participation in the arts and humanities through cultural experiences that are unique to our communities. Indiana Statewide Cultural Districts support community life and economic vitality.

In 2010, the IAC announced designation of the first three State Cultural Districts including Bloomington Entertainment and Arts District; Carmel Art & Design District; and Tippecanoe Arts and Cultural District.

Once a cultural district receives Statewide Cultural District designation, that designation will last for the duration of the program unless the cultural district fails to comply with annual reporting requirements or the IAC Board of Commissioners determines the cultural district to no longer be viable for the community. Acceptance into the program signifies an ongoing commitment to the development and sustainability of the cultural district. 

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