By Marilyn Delk
Darke County Center for the Arts’ 2022-2023 season is rapidly coming to an end with only one performance remaining before the unveiling of what is to come in the next season of presentations. DCCA is known throughout the state for doing a lot with very little, navigated by a governing board made up of dedicated local volunteers who generously give their time to preserve and promote the arts in our community. DCCA’s minuscule staff —all part time employees—generously serves our small rural county, working to present highly talented artists who enrich lives with their gifts. DCCA is able to continue to thrive due to the diligence and efforts of that staff, as well as the support of businesses, organizations, foundations, and individuals who give of themselves in a variety of ways to assure DCCA’s ongoing achievements.
Among those who contribute greatly to DCCA’s success is Greenville Public Library and its staff. As you may know, the library houses DCCA’s office, providing space for equipment and records and DCCA employees at no charge to the arts organization, but library personnel go above and beyond that generous sharing of space to also provide essentially whatever is needed when it is needed for DCCA to serve its patrons. In addition to all that, DCCA’s extremely popular summer event, “Barbecue and Blues,” takes place on the lovely lawn of the library, with library employees providing vital assistance above and beyond the call of duty to assure the event’s continuing success.
City of Greenville officials and staff also contribute to DCCA’s ability to present “Barbecue and Blues,” as well as “Make Music Day” on the first day of summer featuring performances throughout town, and to continue Ghost Walk, the arts organization’s long-running annual Halloween season fundraiser. Additionally, Greenville Union Cemetery allows DCCA volunteers access to the grounds for the Cemetery Ghost Walk which leads fans of ghostly tales along a spooky path visiting gravesites of deceased local residents. And, of course, DCCA is developing the Art Trail in cooperation with Darke County Parks, an ongoing effort expanding the reach of artistic endeavors throughout our community.
DCCA is grateful to Greenville City Schools and its staff and employees who work to maintain historic Henry St. Clair Memorial Hall where DCCA’s productions are presented to appreciative audiences and where visual artists can exhibit their creative work for perusal in the Anna Bier Gallery. The Memorial Hall auditorium is naturally an acoustic wonder, impressing performers with its amazing sound quality as well as its beauty.
And while we are talking about the sound, a shout-out must be directed to the technical crew members who give so much of their time to assure that audiences hear and see the performers at their best, working with equipment that may be old and out-dated or recommending prudent purchases for the benefit of all. Without DCCA’s tech crew, nothing could be seen or heard at Memorial Hall. Additionally, volunteer ushers assist patrons who attend DCCA events at Memorial Hall; students in the Careers with Children class Greenville High School assume those duties at Family Theatre Series shows, while longtime DCCA stalwart Barb Greiner organizes ushering for Artists Series events.
But not all of DCCA’s presentations take place at Henry St. Clair Memorial Hall; the Coffee House Series moves from one intimate small venue to another throughout the year, and local businesses and organizations go to extraordinary effort to welcome those shows. The Coffee Pot in downtown Greenville, Union City Arts Depot, and Arcanum’s Wayne Trail Historical Society provide performance space and hospitality to DCCA and its patrons, as does Montage Cafe, which also generously hosts DCCA ‘s fun fundraisers “A Taste of Wine and Jazz” and “Irish Wave.”
Of course, DCCA also depends upon the Ohio Art Council for the irreplaceable services provided by the state agency which supports quality arts experiences, strengthening Ohio communities culturally, educationally, and economically. Wow! So many entities deserve gratitude for contributing to DCCA’s continuing ability to shine; thank you, thank you, thank you all!