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Recreation/Tourism articles

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Chosen as one of America’s Top Twelve Small-Town Artplaces

PRESS RELEASE: Eastsound Village on Orcas Island is in excellent company. Along with culturally vibrant towns such as Taos , NM and Stowe, VT, Eastsound was chosen as one of “America’s Top Twelve Small-Town ArtPlaces,” a new annual initiative recognizing smaller communities where the arts are central to creating the kinds of places where people want to live, work, and visit. 

The announcement was made today by ArtPlace, a collaboration of foundations, banks, and agencies committed to accelerating creative placemaking—putting the arts at the heart of community revitalization.

Director Carol Coletta said, “Earlier this year, ArtPlace announced America’s Top Twelve ArtPlaces in major metropolitan areas—vibrant communities identified as being exceptionally successful in combining the arts, artists, and venues for creativity and expression with independent businesses, restaurants, and a walkable lifestyle.

It is equally important to celebrate dynamic Small-Town ArtPlaces and the unique qualities that make them well worth the journey to explore and enjoy.” ArtPlace had this to say about Eastsound: a lively community on Orcas Island, the largest of the scenic San Juan Islands in the Salish Sea, midway between Seattle and Vancouver. Located at the top of a fjord-like inlet, the village is home to galleries, boutiques, and eateries.

The galleries display a mix of locally produced art including ceramics from the three pottery studios on the island. Eastsound also has a vibrant performing arts scene including a Chamber Music Festival held every August.

The Top Twelve Small-Town ArtPlaces for 2013 in alphabetical order are:

Boothbay Harbor, ME

Crested Butte, CO

Eastsound, WA

Eureka Springs, AR

Highlands, NC

Ketchum, ID

Lanesboro, MN

Marfa, TX

Saratoga, WY

Stowe, VT

Taos, NM

Vineyard Haven, MA

The twelve communities had the highest concentrations of arts non-profits, core arts-oriented businesses, and workers in creative occupations among smaller towns in the United States.

About the methodology: The 2013 Top Twelve Small-Town ArtPlaces comprise arts-centric communities in single-town zip codes in non-metropolitan areas and metropolitan areas with a population of 100,000 or less. The selection was based on three factors identified by Impresa Inc., a Portland-based consulting firm specializing in the study of regional and metropolitan economies. The factors were the per capita numbers of; arts-related non-profits; arts-related businesses; and people working in creative occupations.

The scores were normalized on a percentile scale (100 being the highest score and zero the lowest) and multiplied. The towns selected had the highest scores in the country.

ArtPlace provides grants and loans, supports research, and conducts outreach and advocacy. To date, they have awarded 80 grants totaling $26.9 million to 76 organizations in 46 U.S. communities.

For more information about ArtPlace, visit http://www.artplaceamerica.org.

MORE INFORMATION on the other selected locations.

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