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Cultural plan sessions come to Marystown

The Marystown session on focusing on the Cultural Plan Renewal had one of the largest number of participants to date, with 17 people coming out to have their voices and concerns heard.
The provincial government's cultural plan session in Marystown had one of the largest number of participants to date, with 17 people coming out to have their voices and concerns heard. - Colin Farrell

Conversation focus of many key comments

MARYSTOWN, NL — A need for easy access to funds to help develop initiatives relating to culture was one topic that kept popping up as players from the cultural sector and local business people met at St. Gabriel’s Hall in Marystown on May 10 to help provide input to the province’s new cultural plan.

Many taking part felt that when business, or community groups try to develop something new that there are many road blocks when looking to access funding for events, with one participant saying it seems you get so far along in the process and then suddenly you are back at the ground floor starting all over again.

The need for a cultural and information hub, better known as a library, was also brought up. It was also noted libraries are at the heart of a lot of community events, be it as a resource for writers, a place to hold public lectures, or for local authors to showcase their works.

Others suggested that major players in the cultural sector in the province such as MusicNL, ArtsNL and others have better outreach programs that can deliver information about their services to rural communities. It was also said those same organization could develop a better understanding of what rural communities have to offer in the way of services and venues.

There was also a focus on how technology and social media can be better integrated into the cultural sector. One such example given was if a lecture was held at The Rooms, it could be broadcast via Facebook anywhere in the world.

Another suggestion said government should do away with the five-to-10-year outlook and instead focus on one-to-five years. A councillor with the Town of Marystown said that looking too far into the future could result in missed opportunities.

It was also suggested that communities around the province who do not have an Arts and Culture building should still be able to have someone in a role that is funded by the province who can help develop cultural programing in the area.

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