The speaker at the March 12, 2019, Norfolk Rotary Club meeting was Sara Putters, the Programs Coordinator at the Norfolk Arts Center. Her main job duty is to put together the various activities at the Norfolk Arts Center.
The Norfolk Arts Center recently held its biggest fundraiser of the year at the Lifelong Learning Center. Soup ‘R Art helped to raise $20,000 for the arts center. Sponsorships, memberships, endowments, private donations, and rental fees are other revenue sources for the arts center.
Members receive a monthly newsletter and receive discounts. The arts center also periodically sends out a catalog that lists the classes, performing arts, and art gallery themes that are organized by staff.
The following are regular events held at the Norfolk Arts Center:
1)      First Fridays: Held on the first Fridays of the month except January. This event hosts musical performances, poetry readings, and art demonstrations for free to the public from 7 – 10 PM. People can bring in their own food, and beverages are sold at this event. First Fridays is usually a well-attended event.
2)      Event hosting: The Norfolk Arts Center has rental space available for meetings, classes, showers, receptions, weddings, etc. The art gallery can also be rented out. Please contact the arts center for pricing and further details.
3)      Second Saturdays: This program takes place on the second Saturdays of the month aimed primarily at youth. Each session teaches participants a new artistic medium in the artist studio. This program is a rolling educational class and also encourages adults to participate with their children.
4)      Artist Talks (Third Thursdays): Art professors and artists discuss their art and practices with the public.
Sara believes that youth, especially K-3 students, really do not have a good understanding of the performing arts. Funding is always an issue in trying to compensate for the lack of art education in schools. To help with this issue, an acting troupe will be performing “Pete the Cat” at the Johnny Carson Theater on March 27 at 10 AM and 1 PM for students. Both shows are already sold out!
The Norfolk Arts Center also works closely with the Norfolk Community Theatre and the Norfolk Children’s Theatre to put on the summer children’s theatre program.
The art gallery is free to the public. Exhibits usually change about every three months. A youth art exhibit is currently in the art gallery.