In some towns, the Local Cultural Council (LCC) restricts itself to one important task: they award state grant money…More to local arts and culture organizations for worthy projects. But in Somerville, our LCC blossomed into the Somerville Arts Council, a full-fledged arts organization that programs community events year-round. They are best-known for ArtBeat, a two-day summer arts festival that fills Davis Square with live music, dance, arts, crafts, food stands—and the occasional electric-guitar-wielding mummy. But that's not all they do.
Their Art Without Walls initiative brings art activities directly to youths in their neighborhoods. Via their Switchbox Project, they are transforming Somerville utility boxes into public works of art. And all summer long, their ArtsUnion initiative presents numerous cultural events in Union Square that range from Haitian or Punjabi cultural festivals to movies screened in Smell-o-Vision and an annual techno dance party under the McGrath Highway overpass.
With Union Square Main Streets, ArtsUnion also hosts the rather unusual fall Fluff Fest, which celebrates the Somerville-born snack food Marshmallow Fluff. Finally, special Arts Council events throughout the year include the popular holiday lights Illumination Tour.
In short, this is an organization bubbling over with creative ideas, and lucky for us, they tend to make them happen.