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TowneBank supports Dare County Arts Council’s digital art programs

With the support of TowneBank, Dare County Arts Council (DCAC) has launched several new digital art programs in response to the COVID-19 pandemic.

The goal of the Dare Digital Arts programs, sponsored by TowneBank, is to provide ways to celebrate the arts community and support its financial health through new initiatives that are safe, meaningful and innovative.

“TowneBank is honored to be a long-time partner with the Dare County Arts Council,” said Taylor Sugg, TowneBank Northeastern North Carolina president. “This new digital initiative speaks to DCAC’s creativity and commitment to the arts community in the midst of challenging times.”

Many Outer Banks artists have been severely impacted by the COVID-19 crisis, especially those in the “gig economy” who are usually gearing up for a busy summer season of performing at local venues this time of year.

One of the new programs is The Courthouse Sessions, which features local musicians and literary artists broadcasting their talents weekly on Dare County Arts Council’s Facebook page as a series of Facebook Live events. During the event, a moderator from Dare County Arts Council’s staff provides links where viewers can tip the artists and/or purchase their work.

“Words can’t even express how grateful I am for The Courthouse Sessions,” said musician Graham Outten. “The comments, the likes, the virtual tips (blown away on that one), and the amount of exposure and marketing that Dare County Arts Council provided gave me a much needed music rejuvenation. Musicians on the Outer Banks play a lot of gigs (background music at bars and such to make a buck) and very rarely do you have an actual show, where people are literally there to see you and enjoy your music. My Courthouse Session definitely was a true show, with 3.9k views on Facebook. I can’t wait to do this again.”

Dare County Arts Council has created two virtual art tours at DareArts.org, featuring Ryan Fox’s watercolor exhibit and Outer Banks Milepost’s Stuck Here On Purpose exhibit, which were both cut short when Dare County Arts Council had to close the Gallery due to COVID-19.

Art instructor Mari LaRose has been teaching free monthly kids art classes on Dare County Arts Council’s Facebook page, offering a creative outlet for children.

In an effort to support Outer Banks artists who exhibit their work at Dare County Arts Council’s Gallery, an online shop has been launched at DareArts.org/shop so art supporters near and far can shop some of the gallery’s featured artists from home.

“Visual artists, performers and media creatives are our people,” said Dare County Arts Council executive director Chris Sawin. “They are Arts Council members, featured performers, exhibitors, designers and friends. The Outer Banks is an experience economy, fueled by this amazing, authentic reservoir of talent. We can’t thank TowneBank enough for their continued support of Dare County Arts Council and our local arts community.”

This is the fourth consecutive year that TowneBank has supported Dare County Arts Council. TowneBank has been the presenting sponsor of DCAC’s fundraising gala for the last three years. They also sponsor Dare County Arts Council’s Power of Art program.

For more information, visit DareArts.org or call 252-473-5558.

Dare County Arts Council is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit arts organization dedicated to encouraging the arts in Dare County through advocacy, enrichment and opportunity.

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