New Hearst Center Director looks to add programs - KWWL - Eastern Iowa Breaking News, Weather, Closings

New Hearst Center Director looks to add programs for community members

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CEDAR FALLS (KWWL) -  Martin Arthur is the new director of the James and Meryl Hearst Center for the Arts in Cedar Falls. He previously worked in Spencer at Arts on Grand.

 Staffers at the Hearst Center said they're excited to have him onboard.

"I just love he's willing to come to all our events, talk to everyone, he's extremely outgoing. he's very personable, and welcoming," said Vicki Simpson.

 Martin Arthur describes himself as an arts activist.

"I started the Friends of the Auditorium to save an art deco auditorium and school from demolition, and it was turned into affordable housing instead," said Arthur.

 Arthur was also part of a program called "The Healing Arts" where musicians played for patients undergoing chemotherapy at cancer centers.

 One of Martin Arthur's first priorities as director was getting internet access for all employees at the center, only a few had it previously. He also just submitted his first grant proposal for lighting in the center's sculpture garden.

"Since we're right on the trails, people can wander into the sculpture garden from the trails. If somebody's going through at night there are some plantings on the ground, so I applied for some walkway lighting," said Arthur.

 A film series is just getting started at the art center, thanks to an idea from Arthur. He also hopes to revive a poetry festival and start a poetry magazine.

 In the long term, Martin Arthur hopes to expand the center to provide more space for artwork, better office space for staff members, and more activities for community members.

The Hearst Center is celebrating its 25th anniversary on May 16-17. You're invited to activities between 5 and 7 p.m. on Friday and between 10 a.m. and 2 p.m. on Saturday.
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