Biz Spotlight: Walton Arts Center

Friday, October 25 at 08:05 AM
Category: Business Banking

For 22 years the Walton Arts Center has been serving the Northwest Arkansas community from the heart of downtown Fayetteville on Dickson Street. It has grown from a fledgling new theater to a premier performing arts powerhouse, mounting major Broadway tours and hosting music, dance, comedy and theater from around the world. It currently features a full season of week-long Broadway shows; a jazz series; kids and family programming; and dance, music and theatrical performances. The center has 55 full-time employees, 35 part-time employees, a local crew of about 125 and over 300 volunteers from all over the region.

As a non-profit arts organization, the Walton Arts Center is also tasked with raising 50 percent of funds through individual donations, corporate sponsorships, grants, and signature events like Art of Wine and Masquerade Ball that add to the cultural landscape of Northwest Arkansas.

“We appreciate the support that Arvest Bank gives us through their participation on our Corporate Leadership Council, as well as the backing of our annual Masquerade Ball and Artosphere events,” said Catherine Wilson, from the development department at the Walton Arts Center. “Arvest provides a variety of helpful services and useful products when it comes to managing money and day-to-day business functions. The staff at Arvest is responsive and quick to offer smart, competitive solutions.”   

The Walton Arts Center is committed to nurturing and supporting local arts organizations by providing residency for TheatreSquared,* Symphony of Northwest Arkansas,* Community Creative Center* and Trike Theatre.* Their educational programs strengthen local schools by providing art experiences to over 50,000 students and offering low-cost tickets through programs like the 10 x 10 Arts Series* and Artosphere Festival.*                        

In 2011, the Walton Arts Center purchased the Arkansas Music Pavilion (AMP)* with the goal of expanding the venue to serve a more diverse audience. The AMP has presented headlining concerts for the past 10 years – from rock and country to electronica and pop. In addition, the AMP provides much-needed revenue for mission-based programs at the Walton Arts Center.                       

Over the next few years, a multi-campus expansion is planned, adding more arts and entertainment all over Northwest Arkansas. This includes building an outdoor amphitheater at Pinnacle Hills in Rogers with more capacity, improved amenities and a central location that will reposition Northwest Arkansas as a major stop on the summer concert tours. There is also a vision to add a 2,000-seat hall over the next five to 10 years, in or near downtown Bentonville. The Walton Arts Center is the economic engine of the entertainment district. This expansion is not only important for the growth of Fayetteville, but helps the development of the entire region.            

The highest priority right now is renovating the Walton Arts Center on Dickson Street. Over the years, the center has experienced tremendous growth and the 22-year-old Fayetteville facility needs renovations and more space to keep up with the growing demand for arts and culture. Plans have been announced to add 30,000 square feet of space including a new lobby and plaza area connecting the building to Dickson Street for more community gatherings and special events, upgrades to Baum Walker Hall and increased capacity in Starr Theater, turning the Walton Arts Center into the busy, two-theater complex it was intended. 

Connect with the Walton Arts Center on their blog,* website,* Facebook,* Twitter* or Instagram.*

On Nov. 12, Fayetteville residents can vote on whether or not to fund a renovation of Walton Arts Center and a new regional park without raising taxes.

The views of this article are for general information use only. Please contact and speak with a subject expert or your banker when specific advice is needed. Find articles like this and much more in the online Arvest Biz Center. Links marked with * go to a third-party site not operated or endorsed by Arvest Bank, an FDIC-insured institution.

Tags: Arkansas, Arvest Biz, Business Banking, Fayetteville
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