DCCA News: Essential connections


Connecting with the arts takes many forms. Perhaps you hear a strain of music that moves you to tears or fills you with joy, or see a painting that motivates you to take up a cause, or simply connect with a performing artist who somehow energizes and touches you.

Darke County Center for the Arts exists to connect our community to diverse artistic experience, encouraging cultural enrichment by presenting a broad variety of programs and events. However, in order for those essential connections to continue to thrive, DCCA needs local citizens to link with the organization.

Many people assume that by purchasing tickets to DCCA events they are supporting their local arts council; however, although those ticket sales provide a large portion of the money needed for DCCA’s operating budget, almost no arts presenters can survive on the revenue so generated. Ticket sales contribute only about 25 percent of the amount needed to fund most arts organizations.

Income from ticket sales seldom covers basic artists’ fees, let alone additional production and hosting expenses. Although DCCA officials strive to keep costs as low as possible, they, like most other non-profits, must take in enough income to cover daily expenses such as office supplies, mailing and printing costs, insurance coverage, and professional association fees as well as salaries. (DCCA’s hard-working, efficient, and minimal staff includes just three positions—an executive director, artistic director, and marketing director, all of whom are “part-time” employees.)

The stark truth is that without sponsorships and memberships, DCCA and like organizations could not continue to provide the vital arts presentations that contribute so much to happy, healthy families and vibrant communities. Individual and business sponsors subsidize the cost of artists fees and production expenses, thereby earning recognition from appreciative audiences for their support of an admired arts organization, and ultimately making connections which result in increased regard for all that those sponsors bring to the community.

But individual membership donations provide the life-blood keeping DCCA alive and well, season after season, year after year. Membership levels range from $25 to $1500 and above, making it possible for those of all economic levels to truly connect with the arts. When DCCA reaches out to students in each grade of all local public schools through its Arts In Education program, memberships support that outreach. When families grow together by attending DCCA’s Family Theatre Series at the low, low ticket price of $5, memberships undergird that growth and subsidize those tickets. When DCCA’s Coffeehouse Series presents outstanding performing artists in intimate social settings where old friends get together and new friends are made, membership donations help fund those memorably delightful evenings. When DCCA presents a week-long residency by Missoula Children’s Theatre offering students the opportunity for hands-on experience with theatre while learning skills that will be of benefit throughout life, memberships aid that transcendent learning experience.

Every time the lights go up on another DCCA Artists Series show at Henry St. Clair Memorial Hall, memberships have aided and abetted that presentation. Since its beginning in 1978, DCCA’s success has been dependent upon members who not only act as consumers of all the organization offers but also as contributors to the common good. DCCA depends upon membership support as it works to achieve its mission enriching lives throughout the community. Make your personal connection to the arts by helping DCCA make meaningful connections with local citizens of all demographics. Become a member today; you’ll gain benefits while benefiting your community, an excellent outcome for all concerned.

To learn more, contact DCCA at 937-547-0908 or [email protected] or visit their Website at www.centerforarts.net.


By Marilyn Delk


Marilyn Delk is a director of the Darke County Center for the Arts and can be reached at [email protected]. Viewpoints expressed in the article are the work of the author. The Daily Advocate does not endorse these viewpoints or the independent activities of the author.

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