Mask Up for the Arts

Saginaw's ACE Collaborative Poses Special Request to the Community

Posted In: Culture, ,   By: Robert E Martin

01st September, 2020     0

Even as much of the local economy is slowly beginning to reopen, Saginaw’s arts and culture organizations are feeling the pressure of the health crisis still upon us.
Pit & Balcony Community Theatre, Saginaw Art Museum, Saginaw Bay Symphony Orchestra, Saginaw Choral Society, and the Temple Theatre have coordinated their efforts as the Arts & Cultural Engagement (ACE) Collaborative and have and important message for arts and culture lovers in Saginaw and the Great Lakes Bay Region.

“Mask up for the Arts!” says Amy Spadafore, Managing Director at Pit & Balcony. “Our region is currently in Phase 4 of the Governor’s MI Safe Start Plan. It is imperative for arts organizations that we enter and stay in Phase 5 in order to operate in a more “normal” way. The only way we will be able to do that is to stop the spread of COVID-19, not only so that we are allowed to re-open but so that once we do our community feels safe and comfortable gathering together.”

Each ACE member organization is committed to providing a sense of relief to their community and a safe way to gather and engage through art once they are able to reopen. In the meantime, there are a few things local residents can do to support arts and culture institutions in Saginaw and the Great Lakes Bay Region so they can get closer to providing the programs and activities that make this region such a great place to live, work, and play.

1) Wear a mask whenever you go to a public place. If you’re unable to do so, look into the resources available to you, such as curbside pickup, grocery delivery, even cocktails to-go from your favorite local bar! (Just don’t drink and drive!)

2) Avoid large social gatherings now so we can get back to them sooner.

3) Make a donation at or purchase gift certificates to use at a later date.

Veronica Horn, Saginaw Chamber of Commerce President/CEO supports ACE’s message. “We know how critical the arts & culture community is to the well-being of any community,” Horn says. “Saginaw has an exceptional number of arts & culture venues. They provide a rich contribution to our lives and need to be supported. We can all play our part by “masking up” to prevent further COVID exposure. We need to move to Phase 5 so these critical arts & culture venues can begin opening again.”

SBSO CEO, Bonnie VanVoorhees, SCS Executive Director, Tamara Grefe, and Temple Theatre and Saginaw Art Museum Marketing and Creativity Director, Thor Rasmussen are all active arts leaders in the ACE Collaborative. “Let’s mask up!” says VanVoorhees. “In order to create those magic and memorable experiences with the SBSO and all of Saginaw’s arts and culture organizations, we all need to adhere to guidelines and get our community open.”

The nonprofit arts sector provides over $150 billion in economic activity nationally every year. They support more than 4 million jobs and generate nearly $30 billion in revenue to the state, local, and federal governments. For every ticket sold to a cultural event, an additional $31 is spent in the community. The economic impact of the nonprofit arts sector is real and undeniable. The impact on the people in the communities we serve is just as important. The arts give voice to the voiceless, courage to the meek, and kinship for the lonely. Most importantly, the arts will help us heal. 

Your support is needed now more than ever for Saginaw’s arts and cultural institutions to remain a viable part of our community, now and in the future. By making a tax-deductible contribution, your donation will help ensure the sustainability of these vibrant organizations and will help aid in their recovery once stay-at-home orders related to the COVID-19 outbreak are lifted

About the Arts & Cultural Engagement (ACE) Collaborative

A grassroots, community-wide effort among Saginaw’s arts organizations to offer reciprocal benefits, cooperative marketing and fundraising efforts, provide support, and raise awareness of the importance of the arts and culture sector to the economy, quality of life, and pride of place in Saginaw.

About Pit & Balcony Creating a dynamic community theatre that engages audiences and artists in enriching performing arts experiences.

About the Saginaw Art Museum

Providing Art for All through education, exhibition, collection and preservation of art.

About the Saginaw Bay Symphony Orchestra

Creating magical and memorable experiences through the power of symphonic music.

About the Saginaw Choral Society

Building and uniting our community through music.

About the Temple Theatre

Providing an amazing experience for all who enter the Temple Theatre.


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