Airdrie City council backs bid for provincial arts awards
The City of Airdrie is backing a community organization’s bid to host the 2015 Lieutenant Governor of Alberta Arts Awards.
City council unanimously endorsed a request for a letter of support for Creative Airdrie’s bid for the event, Feb. 19.
“It’s a tremendous opportunity for our city and a chance to show what we can do in our city,” said Alderman Kelly Hegg, who has pledged to sitting on the organizing committee for the awards.
“We’ve always looked at ourselves as a sports destination, but in the last couple of years, we have really been able to move forward in the arts.”
In 2009, the Airdrie Regional Arts Society put in a bid to host the 2011 Lieutenant Governor Arts Awards, which recognize individual Albertans for outstanding achievement in the arts or significant contributions to the arts in Alberta. However, that bid was not successful.
Creative Airdrie has until March 1 to make their bid for the awards, which have been held every two years since the inaugural event at the Banff Centre in 2005.
If successful, the organizing committee will be responsible for putting on an awards gala and arts festival for a cost of between $110,000 and $160,000, according to Creative Airdrie’s Chair Tim Bolton. Of that total, 30 per cent is expected to be garnered from corporate sponsorships, 25 per cent from ticket sales, 25 per cent from fundraising and 25 per cent from the City and the Province.
Bolton said 40 per cent of the cost will likely be provided in in-kind donations for the two-and-a-half-day event, such as the use of City services and facilities, including Genesis Place and the Bert Church Theatre.
According to Bolton, hosting the awards would be great for the city.
“It raises the profile of the arts in the community and contributes to an increased profile (of Airdrie) in our province,” he said.
“It’s just a great opportunity for us to promote the arts scene in Airdrie.”
Bolton said should Airdrie win the bid, artists from across the province will attend and a mini-festival, details about which are still forthcoming, but will likely include art displays and performances.
Bolton added he was pleased with council’s support of Creative Airdrie’s bid.
“They have been very supportive,” he said. (Council has) recognized the importance of arts and culture in a growing community.”
Should Airdrie be successful in its bid, the awards would likely be held in late spring or early summer of 2015. The winning city will be announced at this year’s awards, held in Red Deer in June.