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State Arts Board In Rhinelander Wednesday To Talk Strategic Plan

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Rhinelander is the next stop as the Wisconsin Arts Board unveils the first draft of the agency's strategic plan.

The Wisconsin Arts Board has been around more than 40 years and is funded by the state of Wisconsin and the National Endowment for the Arts. The agency is tasked with nurturing creativity, promoting the arts, supporting arts education, while also stimulating community and economic development.

Executive Director George Tzougros says after input, they have a draft plan ready for public review...

"....every couple of years we go through our strategic planning process. We have a draft that is reflective of some of the meetings we have in the fall. Now we're coming around the state saying, 'this is what we heard' do you agree with what the outcomes are? Do you agree with what the outcomes are? What would you add, what would you take away?..."

Tzougros says arts funding is always an issue. He says an aging population is putting pressure on the number of volunteers arts agencies have. He says they wonder whether they're responsive enough to the new art forms that are emerging, among other topics...

"...the ultimate challenge in the schools is how much of the arts are being taught in elementary, middle and high school. There are requirements for visual art and music but there aren't such requirements for theater and dance...."

He also mentions the growth of FAB LABS in the Northwoods as an exciting development that has an element of the arts.

The public meeting is set for March 14 from 5:15 to 7 p.m. at ArtStart, 68 South Stevens St. in Rhinelander. The draft strategic plan is available to see on the Wisconsin Arts Board website artsboard.wisconsin.gov

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