Special Thanks to Golden West for their very generous donation!

Golden West Makes Community Donation

Written by Jeremy St. Louis
Tuesday, 27 September 2011 10:28

Cindy Patrick accepts donation from Golden West VP Richard Kroeker

The Steinbach Arts Council and local musician Mike Blair received sizeable donations Tuesday. As part of its commitment to emerging artists and musicians, Golden West Broadcasting handed out two cheques totalling $17,000 to the pair.

The Arts Council gets $12,000 to put towards local programming. Executive Director Cindy Patrick says that's exactly where it will be going.

"We're very excited about having a song-writing workshop and having a mentoring program for young musicians so they can get together, learn to be in a band, learn how to write music and then bring it to our stages. The Arts Council has several 'series' and we will be helping to develop artists so they can perform in these series, like our 'In The Park' series, our 'Summer In The City' series and also they'll be able to perform in our regular concert series."

Emerging country artist Mike Blair says his $5000 is going right into a new CD.

"I've been writing hard all summer and we're getting the tunes together here so, it's actually going towards the production of a new CD. It'll probably be out about January."

Golden West Vice-President Richard Kroeker says the company is committed to helping out arts organizations and up and coming artists.

"That's really what it's all about, helping out young, new artists become very popular and great artists. We hope that it helps out lots of young kids and children so that they become painters or musicians or whatever they like. We're excited about the fact we're able to help in a small way."

Blair says it is unbelievable to have this kind of local support.

"You can't even put a value onto how important that is, especially to an artist in my position. To have somebody in your corner like that...it means the world to know that you've got that kind of support. It also motivates you to push yourself to that next level."

Patrick agrees.

"There's not often a time when young, emerging artists receive funding. It's always that hard road to get to the top, to develop your talent and develop your skills. Sometimes, they don't make it because they don't have the funding to help them do it. This is funding that will go directly towards these young emerging artists, to help them create and be better in their art."

Kroeker says Golden West recognizes that and also recognizes the value of giving back to the community. He adds the company annually donates close to $100,000 to emerging artists and musicians across western Canada. He says they also encourage their staff to be involved in the community at large.

"Our staff volunteer to a lot of charitable organizations. We encourage that in our business that we give back to the community in this way, and they do. I would suspect that 95% of our staff volunteer with some charitable organization in some capacity. That's important to our community, that's important to our culture and that's important to Golden West that we give back in that way."

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About the Steinbach Arts Council

The Steinbach Arts Council, an umbrella organization for performing and visual arts groups, enriches the lives of our community through development of local artists and musicians and exposure to professional art forms. The Steinbach Cultural Arts Centre is a home for all these groups and their programs. It’s purpose is to create an environment where all arts disciplines can work together under one roof and share their resources and their talents with each other, and the entire Arts Community!

For more info, visit steinbachartscouncil.ca.