The Walmart Foundation has awarded a $1.5 million grant to the Walton Arts Center to strengthen the effectiveness of the Fayetteville facility as a destination for more arts, special events, community gatherings and educational programming. This grant contributes to Investing in our Future: The Expansion of Walton Arts Center, the Walton Arts Center’s $23 million campaign to add 30,000 square feet of space, including a new and expanded atrium lobby that connects to Dickson Street, significant renovations and expansion of Starr Theater, expanded space for back of the house technical and theatrical equipment, and new administrative offices.

The goal is to complete the Dickson Street renovation by fall of 2016. Heavy construction of the main lobby and Starr Theater will occur during the off-peak summer months of 2015 and 2016 to minimize the impact on regular programming and ensure the arts center has a full season.

“The partnership between Walton Arts Center and the Walmart Foundation has been an exceptionally strong one,” said Peter B. Lane, president and CEO of Walton Arts Center. “Since opening our doors, the Walmart Foundation has generously supported Walton Arts Center and the Foundation’s participation in this capital campaign represents trust in our future, and the future of the performing arts. Together, the Walmart Foundation and Walton Arts Center have worked to enhance the quality of life in Northwest Arkansas by increasing access to the arts in our region.”

The Walmart Foundation’s mission is to create opportunities so people can live better. Supporting Walton Arts Center is one way Walmart is enhancing the quality of life and making a positive impact in Northwest Arkansas by increasing access to arts.

“This grant to the Walton Arts Center will increase community access to the arts, special events, gatherings and educational programming,” said Kathleen McLaughlin, president of the Walmart Foundation, senior vice president of Corporate Affairs. “Our support of the Walton Arts Center is part of our ongoing commitment to helping our neighbors in Northwest Arkansas live better, by increasing access to arts and recreation, alleviating hunger, and improving health care access and delivery.”

Private support is key to leveraging the generosity of the Walmart Foundation, the City of Fayetteville and its residents who voted in support of the Yes! Yes! Yes! Campaign. Walton Arts Center is excited about what the future holds and invites the community to join us as we plan for the future.

To learn more about giving opportunities to the Walton Arts Center, contact Missy Darwin Kincaid 479.571.2781