Capital City retains high marks for the arts

    Juneau, Alaska (KINY) Juneau ranked ninth in a survey of 900 small communities for the vibrancy of its arts programs.

    Mayor Ken Koelsch said he knew Juneau is a great arts community, "As someone who spent many years teaching theater to hundreds of young people at Juneau-Douglas High School, I've always known Juneau is a special place when it comes to the arts."

    Koelsch said he is very impressed with the entire community and how they foster the arts, "I hope it puts another facet on the radar for Juneau.  We are the state capital, we have a robust mining, fishing and tourism industry, but we have a very robust art industry."

    Koelsch said all Juneau residents should be proud of the ranking.

    Southern Methodist University, (SMU) has a dedicated institute called the National Center for Arts Research (NCAR) that examined the levels of supply, demand and public support for the arts in over 900 communities across the nation.

    Juneau has been in the top 10 before based on the number of independent artists, people employed in arts and culture industries, artistic organizations, and businesses involved in the arts and culture.  Juneau was also ranked 16th in the entire nation for the per capita number of arts organizations here.

    Other factors considered in the rankings are revenue generated by arts and culture and state and federal support for arts activity.  Juneau was second in the nation per capita in the securing of competitive grants from the federal government from the National Endowment for the Arts and the Institute of Museum & Library Services.

    The Juneau Arts and Humanities council efforts to build a new Juneau Arts and Culture Center were also mentioned in the report.  Artist and Secretary of the JAHC Board of Trustees, Susan Sloss, said she was thrilled to hear the news, "This is welcome recognition that underscores how much Juneauites love the arts and enjoy them in their daily lives."


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