Print
More News

Report Shines Spotlight On Local Arts Economy

By Suzanne Cosgrove, posted Jun 19, 2017
Rhonda Bellamy, executive director of the Wilmington and Arts Council of Wilmington and New Hanover County, goes over a new report about the arts' local economic impact during a press conference Monday at City Hall. (Photo by Suzanne Cosgrove)
An economic impact study conducted in New Hanover County found that the nonprofit arts and culture industry generates $55.8 million in overall economic activity and supports 2,076 jobs annually.

Officials with the city of Wilmington and Arts Council of Wilmington and New Hanover County unveiled results from the latest Arts & Economic Prosperity report Monday at City Hall. The research was performed by Americans for the Arts, a national nonprofit, according to a news release.
 
The report found that nonprofit arts and culture organizations spent $14.8 million in the county 

New Hanover County Impacts

$14.8 million: Amount spent by nonprofit arts and culture organizations in the county during FY 2015

$55.8 million: Annual economic activity overall

2,076: Number of full-time equivalent jobs supported

$5.6 million: Amount of local and state government revenues generated
Source: Arts & Economic Prosperity 5 study from Americans for the Arts

during the 2015 fiscal year. That spending included things such as the payment of employees, purchase of supplies and contract for services. In turn, $44.1 million was generated in household income, and $5.6 million in local and state government revenues.

Rhonda Bellamy, executive director of the arts council and coordinator of the local study, said in the release that the findings confirm that the arts are a major economic driver in New Hanover County.

“We’ve just got a lot going on, and the more that happens and the more energy we get around the arts, the more we’re able to showcase the region as an arts destination, the more we can pull in the cultural tourists who stay longer and spend more,” Bellamy said Monday at the press conference.

Non-local residents made up 36 percent of audiences in 2015 and spent an average of $23.86 at events, compared to locals, who spent an average of $21.97, according to the study.
 
Local businesses were found to be impacted by the nonprofit arts and culture industry.  Attendees to cultural events often spend money on parking, dinner, child care and gifts and souvenirs, leveraging $41 million in event-related spending by audiences, the report stated.
 
Wilmington Mayor Bill Saffo said the arts play a major role in the community, mentioning art contributors such as Thalian Hall, Cape Fear Community College’s Wilson Center, Cameron Art Museum and the numerous artists within the county. 
 
“Arts definitely are the cool factor,” Saffo at the press conference.
 
Robert Lynch, president and CEO of Americans for the Arts, said in the news release that a vibrant arts and culture industry helps local businesses thrive.
 
“Leaders who care about community and economic vitality can feel good about choosing to invest in the arts,” Lynch said. “Nationally as well as locally, the arts mean business.”
 
Nationally, the Arts & Economic Prosperity 5 report found that the nonprofit arts industry generates $166.3 billion in economic activity every year and supports 4.6 million full-time equivalent jobs.
 
Susi Hamilton, secretary of the N.C. Department of Natural and Cultural Resources, is traveling around the state to help unveil results of the study in different regions and spoke at Monday’s event. She stressed that arts and culture are in fact economic development tools and a catalyst for economic activity. 
 
“It’s a huge opportunity for the state of North Carolina to look at what the arts bring,” Hamilton said.

Ico insights

INSIGHTS

SPONSORS' CONTENT
Yasminheadshotwithlogo

Why Volunteer for a Nonprofit Board?

Yasmin Tomkinson - Cape Fear Literacy Council
Karagansmanncshlaw300x300

Post-Retirement Planning: A Checklist for Seniors

Kara Gansmann - Cranfill Sumner & Hartzog LLP
Denverhollingsworthheadshot

Debunking the Myths of Bulk WiFi

Denver Hollingsworth - Epproach Communications

Trending News

Changes Coming To Hanover Center, Oleander Drive Site

Cece Nunn - Feb 21, 2018

Downtown Wilmington Store Moving To Mayfaire Town Center

Cece Nunn - Feb 22, 2018

Papanikolaou Family Opens Symposium At Mayfaire

Jessica Maurer - Feb 21, 2018

In Wilmington Area, Residential Real Estate Firms Continue To Expand

Cece Nunn - Feb 23, 2018

Peño Mediterranean Grill Welcomes Customers To New Location  

Jessica Maurer - Feb 21, 2018

In The Current Issue

Tax Reform

On Super Bowl Sunday, real estate developer Don Lashley actually found time to talk business. The subject? The omnibus tax reform bill signe...


How To Give, Despite Deduction Increase

Wilmington-area nonprofits, like their counterparts across the country, are watching to see what happens to charitable contributions in 2018...


Commerce Park Attracts More Firms

After two years of a lull without new tenants, a national logistics company and statewide beverage distributor are now planning to invest in...

Book On Business

The 2018 WilmingtonBiz: Book on Business is an annual publication showcasing the Wilmington region as a center of business.

Order Your Copy Today!


Galleries

Videos

WilmingtonBiz Expo - Keynote Lunch with John Gizdic, CEO, New Hanover Regional Medical Center
Wilmington's Most Intriguing People of 2017
2017 Health Care Heroes