As published in the Intercounty Leader on June 21, 2023
Frederic Arts, Inc., is a nonprofit formed in 2009 to create artistic opportunities and preserve community culture through educational events and programs. The Frederic Arts Center is on Lake Avenue, across from Coon Lake Park, in what many remember as the American Legion Hall. The building has a long history of community activity, beginning in 1896 as the Lincoln School, located south of Frederic on State Highway 35, one of five schools serving the Luck school district. When the school closed in 1953, it was sold to the Frederic American Legion and moved to its present location in 1957. After more than fifty years of service, the Legion vacated the building just when the newly formed arts nonprofit was looking for a permanent location. Frederic Arts rented the space until it was able to purchase the building in 2018. Today this former school, a wonderful example of local history, continues to be used as a classroom to introduce creative opportunities through a wide variety of events, classes, and programs. We are proud to say we reach and teach all ages with art experiences from grade school students to senior citizens.
One of the favorite programs for volunteers and participants alike is the Senior Art program where Frederic Arts members teach art to the residents of our local assisted living facility each month. The new Frederic Young Artists Club, in partnership with the Frederic Public Library, taught creative skills to children ages 8 and older. Frederic Arts annually donates art supplies and funds to the school art department, and this June, we are hosting art classes for the summer school students. We encourage community participation by sponsoring events including art and craft shows, festivals, and live music concerts with local musicians throughout the summer months. Hands-on art classes for adults have included painting, batik, wheel throwing pottery, weaving, timber framing, fused glass, felting, foraging, and polymer clay.
Frederic Arts is an all-volunteer organization, including the board. We are always looking for new volunteers to help us expand our mission. We believe Frederic Arts has made a difference in our community, by offering learning and participation activities directed to more than 400 students, and a variety of events attracting the broader community. Our classes fill up at a steady rate, our concert attendance is growing, and memberships are rising. Future plans include making our one-room school house facility accessible for all; expansion of classes and classroom space; and completing our dramatic bandshell.
Most of all it’s the comments from community members that say it best. Last month upon arriving at the assisted living facility for the monthly art class, a resident was in tears. When she saw us hauling in art supplies, she perked up and said, “You make me get out of my head, and feel much better when I think about what I’m doing.” She proceeded to paint happily for the next hour. This is why we love what we do: we help others feel good through their own creative accomplishments. Frederic Arts has something for everyone, and even if you think you are not an artistic person, you will have a creative experience! Check us out. For more information, go to www.fredericarts.org, or like us on Facebook.
The Northwest Alliance Community Foundation is an affiliate of the St. Croix Valley Foundation. We support our area nonprofits with educational opportunities and grants. Please consider joining us by making a donation. See our website nacommunityfoundation.org for more information or email firstname.lastname@example.org.