Thursday, March 18, 2010

The Latest and the Greatest

Hello all, here’s your latest WACtacular. Post your comments below:

  • A proposal has been sent to Victoria Nimirowski, director of WAIM for shared rental of the space currently occupied by WindhamARTS alone.
  • Victoria and I spoke about this proposal. She is very enthusiastic, is bringing the proposal to committee, and will hopefully have an answer very soon.
  • WindhamARTS, Swiftwater Artisans, the Coop-Hub, and individual artists have participated in the discussion. Other dynamic individuals and organizations involved in the arts and culture of our region are entering the mix.
  • We are proposing to begin this rental agreement April 1st.
  • If you’re interested in getting involved, in renting studio space or shared office space, email me – amy at – and I’ll give you the details.
  • Stay tuned for new life for the arts at 866 Main!


  • We’re waiting on news of a grant from CEDF
  • This funding would allow WAC to regroup with professional guidance, help the Board of Directors analyze their roles, goals, and functionality, rebuild the web site to best serve the arts & cultural community, and solicit and make a plan for how to move forward into a bright and vibrant future.
  • We should hear the (hopefully good) news any day now. Again, stay tuned – you’ll hear it here first folks!


  • People are asking about renewing membership. (All memberships were up for renewal in January, but no membership drive was undertaken at that time.)
  • Without staff and with the space question up in the air, it is difficult to guarantee the old membership benefits, hence the delay.
  • Membership fee/benefits structure is up for discussion and may change. One proposal is to raise the cost of membership, one is to eliminate it altogether. There are all kinds of possibilities in between and much to take into consideration about how best to serve the arts community. In any case, good things are happening and we want you to be a part of it.
  • In the meantime, consider offering a Vote of Confidence by making a donation to WindhamARTS. We’ll keep track of your donations, and, if/when dues are once again solicited, credit your contributions accordingly.
  • You can donate via Paypal (by pressing the donate button here) or send us a check made out to WindhamARTS Collaborative and mail it to: WindhamARTS Collaborative, P.O. Box 472, Willimantic, CT 06226. Either way, we welcome your comments!
  • On a personal note: Thank you to those who have already stepped forward with donations. I take these as a personal compliment, a vote of confidence and support for all the volunteer efforts and hopeful visions for the arts in our region that are being carried forward by me and other long-time supporters of WindhamARTS. If financial support isn't possible for you right now, your ideas, visions, hopes, and pats on the back of are also very welcome and appreciated.

Yours truly,

Amy K

Friday, March 12, 2010

New Life for 866 Main?

This past Wednesday, March 10th, a follow-up meeting to the "Community Arts Center Summit" was held at WindhamARTS. With input by individual studio artists and others, representatives from WindhamARTS, SWAC, and the Coop-Hub drew up a proposal to together rent the space that until recently was leased from WAIM by WindhamARTS alone. 

Another meeting will be held this coming Wednesday, March 17th at 6pm to follow up and tackle some of the unresolved details. WAIM has been contacted; we are awaiting their response. I think it's safe to say there is excitement in the air. An email I received from one of Wednesday's meeting attendees began with, and this is an exact quote: 
I will, of course, keep you posted.

Thursday, March 4, 2010

Board Meeting Report

The WindhamARTS Board of Directors met last night, Wednesday, March 3rd. Karl Norton, Kim Radda, Paula McNally, and Maureen Crowley were present, as was I, Amy Kalisher, at Kim Radda's request, reporting on what's happening with the 866 Main Street building and the exploration into collaborative rental. 

Discussion included:
  • Open positions on the Board of Directors, including that of Treasurer, plans to pursue filling these positions.
  • My offer to manage the building on behalf of WindhamARTS in exchange for studio space, if a rental agreement can be reached.
  • Kim will pursue legal advice for next steps toward potentially taking me up on this offer - making appropriate lease agreements, the proper way to go about hiring/appointing a Building Coordinator, and other questions about next steps as an organization in transition - for instance, how to go about creating a place for member representation on the Board.
  • The Board did officially okay me to represent them in discussions with WAIM and potential rental collaborators, and to include two of our three computers as part of the office-sharing offering. 
  • Agreement to work toward freeing Peter Polomski from the directorial responsibilities he continues to bear because no one has yet to take his place. (Mostly this has to do with bookkeeping. Since there is no staff now, this mainly consists of building management.)
  • Questions about the meaning, benefits, and responsibilities of membership at WindhamARTS and how to involve current, past, and possible-future members in the discussion - stay tuned for more on this soon.
  • Transitional planning - next steps toward securing an appropriate Peer Advisor for an eight-hour consultation (a $100 expense).
  • Evil schemes to take over the world.
Wait -- WHAT??? Not that last one.

Tuesday, March 2, 2010

Meetings Galore

The WindhamARTS Board of Directors will convene Wednesday, March 3rd. There is no plan for a member meeting that night.

There will be an open meeting to further discuss the potential of shared space on the following Wednesday, March 10th at 6pm at WindhamARTS. All are welcome.

Stay tuned for more updates!