Land of Creative Opportunity: How the Arts Affect Quality of Life in Arkansas

October 2013 ENGAGE Magazine

In this edition, we're looking at how the arts affect health, education, human services and other aspects of quality-of-life.

View the full edition online or download a PDF

Stories Inside:

Land of Creative Opportunity: In communities across Arkansas, the arts give local economies a boost
If you want proof that the arts can be a powerful driver of economic development, look no further than Bentonville, where the 2-year-old Crystal Bridges Museum of American Art has sparked a revitalization of the downtown area and created both jobs and a new, rich source of tax revenue for the city. If you want inspiration, though — and evidence that high-dollar philanthropy isn’t a necessary part of the equation — shift your eyes east to Newport...

What Role Do the Arts Play in Overall Quality of Life?
Viewpoints from Rod Bigelow of Crystal Bridges Museum of American Art and Pulaski County Judge Buddy Villines. 

Four Ways the Arts Improve Health
We know intuitively that the arts enrich our lives and satisfy our need for beauty and creativity. But art can also have a profound impact on our mental and physical well-being. Find out four ways the arts improve physical health and well-being. 

Shakespeare Helps Shelter Residents Build Community and Confidence
Joy Ritchey, case manager for Our House shelter in Little Rock, realized shelter housed several residents who shared names with some of Shakespeare’s greatest characters: Portia, Ophelia, Cordelia, Romeo. Ritchey was concerned that some of the shelter’s residents seemed lonely and disconnected, and the Shakespearean connection gave her an idea to build engagement and create a social outlet — what if Our House’s residents put on a Shakespeare play? 

Arts Infused Curriculum Unlocks Students' Academic Potential
For the past 10 years, Hugh Goodwin Elementary has participated in Arkansas A+ Schools, a framework to infuse the arts and experiential learning into every aspect of a school’s curriculum. Science lessons become an opportunity to build, draw and model. Reading lessons involve singing and dance. Math lessons invite students to move and role-play to understand the relationships among numbers.

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