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Cultural Plan for Cornwall and SD&G unveiled

Jason Setnyk
Our Hometown

Cultural Plan for Cornwall and SD&G unveiled
A special meeting was held on June 28th to unveil the new Cultural Plan for Cornwall and SD&G. About 100 people including politicians and many artists attended the meeting held at the Cornwall Civic Complex. Denis Thibault, who is a Cornwall City Councillor and Executive Director at Eastern Ontario Training Board, welcomed the audience.

Cornwall - Jun. 29, 2011 - A special meeting was held on June 28th to unveil the new Cultural Plan for Cornwall and SD&G. About 100 people including politicians and many artists attended the meeting held at the Cornwall Civic Complex.

Denis Thibault, who is a Cornwall City Councillor and Executive Director at Eastern Ontario Training Board, welcomed the audience. He said, "it's been a year and a half to two years to deliver this to you today". Thibault proceeded to introduce Jon Hack of Sierra Planning and Management who presented a one hour power point presentation about the Culture Plan.

The presentation explained the definition of culture, it examined the economic goals of a culture plan, and it explained the process of how they gathered information about culture in this area. According to Hack, "the culture strategy needs to be as inclusive as possible". Although Akwesasne was not at the table and did not participate in the Culture Plan, Hack said, “we did talk to members of the First Nations, and talked about traditions like story telling”.

Several of the suggestions in the culture plan include creating a Centre for Arts and Culture, maintaining and better utilizing current infrastructure, creating a permanent Arts Council, building stronger partnerships, and improved marketing of cultural events. If there is only one Culture Centre in SD&G, there might be heated debate about which city or township will house such a centre.

The presentation concluded with a suggested time line for municipal governments to address the plan. After the presentation their was a brief question and answer period. Bernadette Clement and Elaine MacDonald both asked questions, as did several other people in attendance.

Rodney Rivette who is on the executive of the Seaway Cultural Arts Committee addressed Hack. "We believe an Artist Centre needs to be run by artists, we've done research, raised money, and we can help in the process". Hack replied to Rivette, "active groups need to be at the table".

Will Cornwall and SD&G have a Centre for Arts and Culture in the near future? It's up to the municipal governments to examine the Cultural Plan and it's up to citizens to voice what they want their local governments to do.

For more information visit: sdgculture.ca


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