Best Organizations Giving Back To The Tampa Arts

April 23, 2012 6:00 AM

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The arts play an important role in the economic recovery of our community. Nonprofit agencies and organizations often work in partnership with businesses to help create and support Tampa’s rich cultural arts scene. Here are some of the organizations helping to ensure this growth.
artgallery Best Organizations Giving Back To The Tampa Arts

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Tampa Bay Businesses for Culture & the Arts
P.O. Box 559
Tampa, FL 33601
(813) 221-2787

The Tampa Bay Businesses for Culture & the Arts (TBBCA) is a nonprofit organization of businesses committed to supporting a stronger artistic and cultural community. With partnership building, leadership development and advocacy, this group encourages businesses to invest in arts and culture through financial contributions and volunteerism. The group’s scholarship program, High School Art Stars, awards six merit-based scholarships to Tampa Bay area high school juniors and seniors each year to help them pursue education in the arts. The TBBCA conducts regular economic impact studies of Hillsborough and Pinellas Counties to gather data on the effectiveness of the arts on our area economy. Business partners understand that investing in a strong arts and cultural community translates into real dollars for the local marketplace. The return on investment for arts and culture in the state of Florida is impressive. The group will be launching its next economic impact study this year. The last study, conducted in 2005, concluded that the arts and cultural community contributes over $521 million annually to Tampa Bay’s economy.

karan porter artist at tampa bay event sarah dees Best Organizations Giving Back To The Tampa Arts

Artist Karan Porter paints live at Tampa Bay event (credit: Sarah Dees)

Creative Pinellas
14025 58th St North
Largo, FL 33760
(813) 784-2972

Hampton Arts Management director T. Hampton Dohrman is also the director of the new entity, Creative Pinellas. Founded in 2011, the nonprofit organization is committed to promoting Pinellas County arts and artists. Working within the county while reaching out to the greater community, they build connections, collaborations and educational opportunities for artists and arts organizations. The group will support projects and programs through small investment philanthropy that produces high creative returns. In 2003, the organization’s predecessor, nonprofit Creative Tampa Bay, started to connect the arts with businesses in the Tampa Bay area through events, research, a magazine and an online newsletter. They see the creative arts as a catalyst for economic and social development, and work together to build a vibrant, sustainable community. Hampton says he is committed to the microgrant program and that he’s seen artists produce big results with even a small amount of money given at the right time.

Related: Best Tampa Theaters And Concert Halls

puppetworld bits n  pieces  artists in schools sarah dees Best Organizations Giving Back To The Tampa Arts

(credit: Sarah Dees)

Arts Council of Hillsborough County
707 N Franklin St
Tampa, FL 33602
(813) 276-8250

The Arts Council of Hillsborough County is an agency coordinating all forms of culture and the arts through two divisions. The council provides their Arts Tampa Bay website, shared with Pinellas County, as a resource for finding employment opportunities in the arts, showcasing visually artistic skills and spreading the word about certain organizations’ events. The newsletters, workshops, cultural directory and one on one community gatherings provide ample communication for nurturing performing and visual arts. With 60 theater groups, opera, symphony, orchestra and ballet companies, there’s plenty to keep up with. The council’s Arts in Education division provides professional touring companies for the The Artists in the Schools program.

childrenart Best Organizations Giving Back To The Tampa Arts

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Fine Arts of the Suncoast
P.O. Box 609
New Port Richey, FL 34656
(727) 247-6182

Fine Arts of the Suncoast, Inc. is a nonprofit corporation developing a community culture that embraces the arts. The corporation is organized exclusively for charitable and promotional purposes, providing a quality fine arts show, promoting the arts for children and increasing awareness of the arts. A primary goal of this event is raising funds for the benefit Arts for Kids. The money raised will be used for improving the visual and performing arts equipment going to children attending Pasco County schools. Every year at the Suncoast Arts Fest, a special container is placed outside for visitors to drop off new art supplies for students. These supplies are  distributed to schools in the area. In 2010-2011, Suncoast Arts Fest gave out 11 art teacher grants and sent 16 art teachers to the Florida Art Education Association conference. This past year, the organization awarded a total of about $5000 in grants.Related: Tampa’s Best Stuff For Young Kids (5-8)

stageworks theater new location entry sarah dees Best Organizations Giving Back To The Tampa Arts

(credit: Sarah Dees)

1120 E Kennedy Blvd
Tampa, FL 33602
(813) 251-8984

Stageworks is a 28-year-old nonprofit theater company that recently moved to its new permanent home in Tampa. Their Rainbow Tribe is a company of multi-racial actors, directors and teachers who use the power of live performance to teach at-risk kids about tolerance, empowerment, anger management, AIDS, gang prevention and African American history. Their community outreach programs are in great demand, and they provide wonderful services for our community in both education and entertainment.

Sarah Dees is an accomplished artist, writer, educator, and entrepreneur, with over twenty-five years of professional experience. Sarah attended Eckerd College for two years, and graduated with a BFA from Parsons School of Design in New York City. She is a freelance writer in Tampa Bay. Her work can be found at