As my final hours come up at the MAC, I find myself reflecting not only on my time here but on the past century as well. My project this week was to compile the history of our building via old images, newspaper articles, and a big stack of old files that I scanned into our computer system. With the McConnell Arts Center’s 10 Year Anniversary coming up, my supervisor thought it would be a great idea to shine a spotlight on the story of how our building came to be.
As a tried and true nerd, I found this project to be extremely interesting. I was able to use the skills I picked up in my music history class to do some research both online and in the Worthington Library. I have a lot of fun sorting through old documents and connecting the dots to build a more complete timeline.
My favorite tidbit that I learned through this process was the story of a “kidnapping” back in 2006. While fundraising for construction costs to renovate the building, the Worthington Arts Council sold “Art People,” four–foot plywood figures that community members could “adopt” and decorate for display. Apparently, several of these “Art People” were all gathered on the Village Green and one was stolen! There was an unofficial APB put out in the local newspaper to ask the kidnappers to bring the Art People back so that the community could continue to enjoy it. The name of the sky-themed Art People? “Art Takes Flight.”
Between this project, the bench reupholstery, and the kids I got to work with this summer, I feel confident that I’ve left a positive mark on this organization. My time at the MAC has been fulfilling (and a heck of a lot of fun, too!). The people here have inspired me and taught me so much about arts advocacy and administration. After the chaos and business of this summer, I feel truly prepared for whatever this upcoming school year and my future have in store.
Big thanks to the rest of the staff, who surprised me with a signed card and a box of cookies this afternoon for my last day, and an equally big thanks to the Columbus Foundation, for sponsoring this opportunity.