Local Arts Agency

Arcata Playhouse logo

At its July 24, 2013 special meeting, the Arcata City Council voted to designate Playhouse Arts/Arcata Playhouse as the City's Local Arts Agency (LAA) for a term that would be subject to Council review and renewal every four years.

As the City's Local Arts Agency, Playhouse Arts/Arcata Playhouse will advise the City Council on art-related issues. The LAA designation also assists Playhouse Arts/Arcata Playhouse in applying for grant funding from the National Endowment for the Arts.

Organizations referred to as arts councils make up the field of LAAs. LAAs can be private, nonprofit entities; others are public municipal, county or regional agencies. Nearly all LAAs present programming to the public, manage cultural facilities, provide services to artists and arts organizations and facilitate community cultural planning. In accomplishing this work, LAAs collaborate with other governmental departments (economic development, parks and recreation, libraries and local education agencies/school districts) as well as with convention and visitors bureaus.

Playhouse Arts/Arcata Playhouse was born from a partnership of Vagabond Children's Theater, Shoebox Puppets and Four on the Floor Theater. In the fall of 2006, the Arcata Playhouse took over the Old Creamery Building's theater space, once known as Pacific Arts Center Theater, and opened their doors in February 2007. Within the first year, the organization formed around the nonprofit Playhouse Arts and established itself as a community arts center that would come to provide events and programs for youth, families and adults while making its spaces available to a wide array of local organizations.

Playhouse Arts/Arcata Playhouse has been a driving force and catalyst behind the establishment of the Creamery District that promotes the arts and creative commerce through neighborhood artists, property owners, architects, individuals, businesses, organizations, civic officials and interested community members all collaborating to create a thriving, unique arts district in the neighborhood surrounding the historic Creamery Building.