Cultural Arts Center Open House

April 27, 2011

What once was a bustling retail anchor in the heart of the city Frederick is now bustling with arts activities on a regular basis. The Cultural Arts Center, located in historic downtown Frederick, has done much for the arts community and the revitalization of the downtown area since its beginning in 1998.

On Thursday, April 28, an Open House is planned from 4-7 p.m. A ribbon-cutting ceremony will take place in partnership with the Frederick County Chamber of Commerce. During this time, organizers plan to dedicate the new facades to the building. Over the past several months, a major facelift has taken place to the exterior equating to approximately $40,000 in improvements. The work was made possible by financial support from the Downtown Frederick Façade Improvement Program and the Tourism Council of Frederick County’s TRIPP grant. Other announcements will be made as part of the ceremony.

From 5-6 p.m., the open house continues with refreshments, networking, live music, and gallery exhibits. Tours of the facility will be made available to anyone interested as well. In addition, a drawing will take place for a limited edition Rebecca Pearl print entitled “The Art in Five and Dime” for current and new members of the Frederick Arts Council.

Finally, at 6:00 p.m., the Frederick Arts Council will formally dedicate the new Frederick County Arts Hall of Fame. At its annual Celebration of the Arts Dinner in October, the organization inducted five people as the inaugural class of the hall of fame to recognize the significant contributions these individuals. A permanent plaque will be dedicated inside the facility honoring the 2010 inductees, which included Francis Scott Key, Helen Smith, Richard Troxell, Joyce Michaud, and Bobby Steggert. Both Troxell and Michaud will be in attendance. Each year, a new class of inductees will be announced and commemorated.

The Cultural Arts Center (CAC) is owned and managed by the Frederick Arts Council and provides a vehicle for the organization to accomplish its role of supporting, promoting, and advocating for the arts. The building was formerly home to a McCrory’s five and dime department store. The Cultural Arts Center is a community arts venue for actors, dancers, musicians and artists of every discipline where they can affordably work, rehearse, perform, exhibit, or teach.

On a typical weekend, the Cultural Arts Center is busting with activity. Plays, music concerts, and dance performances can be seen in the 106 seat Black Box Theatre. Rehearsals, lectures, special events, and other activities take place throughout the week in the event hall. And, monthly rotating art exhibits can be found in the gallery.
The facility is one of the busiest arts spaces in Frederick County. Over thirty different groups utilized the center last year. As a result, the facility and the Frederick Arts Council, has served as an incubator for several arts organizations throughout Frederick County.

The property is an icon in downtown Frederick, whether formerly as the McCrory Department Store or as the Cultural Arts Center. The 14,000 square foot facility has an L-shape, thereby having frontage on Patrick Street as well as Market Street, Frederick’s Main Street. The Cultural Arts Center is in the heart of Frederick’s Arts and Entertainment District, yards away from the Weinberg Center for the Arts and the Maryland Ensemble Theatre (MET). “Frederick has a tremendous arts community. The fact that three theaters are within 50 yards of each other boasts well for the city,” Frederick Arts Council Executive Director Shuan Butcher said. The Open House is free and open to the public. For more information, call 301-662-4190.