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The Publisher | A Letter from Jimmy Dean
Here at the magazine, we always theme our October issue around the bountiful arts scene we have here in the Greater Charlotte Harbor region, and we are never at a loss for words. Perhaps it’s because we have such a plethora of opportunities in which to immerse ourselves in the arts. We have access to everything from large symphonic orchestras and intimate chamber music to throwing pottery, experiencing opera, stage performances of drama, comedy and romance, plein air painting and so very much more.
In this issue, we examine several facets of the sparkling jewels of artistic expression we enjoy here year round. We dedicate an entire issue to the subject because we know many of you reading this are relatively new to the area and we aspire to be your guidebook to exploring the arts scene. Of course, even with an entire issue, we are only able to scratch the surface, but hopefully you will be intrigued enough to dive in and immerse yourself in the arts and find your muse, your bliss, your passion of artistic expression.
Why are the arts so vital?
High quality economic development.
It is a well-documented fact that baby boomers, those born between the years 1946 and 1964, are causing a major demographic shift in America. More than 10,000 people a day are currently aging into the retirement years of 65ish and many, if not most of them, are headed to warmer climes to live out their golden years. They will be sampling all corners of Florida, Arizona, California, Texas and other Sunbelt states. Those communities that offer the amenities they are seeking, like the arts, will enjoy this influx of new residents, meaning a boom for the real estate and services sector. That means jobs. That means higher wages and better careers for those seeking employment. That means a higher quality of life for everyone. So, while the arts may appear to be a “nice” thing to have in ample supply, they are also a critical component when it comes to the health and economic well-being of a community. These newcomers are ready, willing and able to enjoy and support our creative offerings.
That last part is the most critical. We need to attract those newcomers who will gladly patronize and support the organizations you will meet in this issue along with all the arts organizations in our area.
But let us not wait. Let’s all make a concerted effort to start supporting the arts now. All of us. Let us patronize the galleries. Attend symphony performances, chorale shows, plays and operas. Take an art class. Vote YES for the Charlotte Schools Referendum this November so our next generation continues to grow up with art in their lives.
We humbly submit to set an example with this issue.
So, find a comfy place to read, then settle back and enjoy our form of creative expression, the ARTS Issue.