PPNA Happenings

Happenings, history and news of the Prospect Park Neighborhood and Ypsilanti

Riverside Arts Center

Posted by ppna on December 26, 2007

Riverside Arts Center

Here in Ypsilanti we have The Riverside Arts Center a very nice building owned by Ypsilanti’s Downtown development authority. To me the Riverside Arts Center is another representation of a lack of representation. It is because we live in a city where the majority of the citizens, and city council members for that matter, don’t know what is going on that this project exists. The goal of the Riverside Arts Center is a “multi-purpose cultural arts venue providing performance, exhibit, studio, office and reception space for artists and arts and cultural organizations to enrich the Ypsilanti community through the arts and cultural experiences.” It’s a valuable goal but do we need to spend millions to reach it?

It seems to me that the Riverside Arts Center has become the venue of a few select amateur theater companies at the expense of the residents. I could be entirely wrong about this but when you learn that they want to spend 6 to 7 hundred-thousand dollars to put an elevator in the building it makes you wonder what we are doing as a community. These funds will come from grants which were supposed to be used for the Water Street Project but were transfered to the Riverside Arts Center. Keep in mind that every dollar of a grant is somebody’s tax dollar. A while back there was a great discussion of this on Mark Maynard’s site and I suggest you read through that.

This post was originally intended to be a historical piece on Quirk’s Ypsilanti Players but I was sidetracked when I wanted to mention the RAC as the modern theater in town. Ypsilanti is a town where theater should be cheap or free. If you want to bring theater to people put it in the park.

Ypsi Play


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