WABASH, Ind. (WANE) – On Friday, Downtown Wabash was designated an Indiana Cultural District by the Indiana Arts Commission (IAC). This designation is a prestigious milestone in the Creative Community Pathway Program.
A Cultural District is a well-recognized, labeled, mixed-use area with a unique, authentic art and cultural identity, according to IAC. To date, only 12 Cultural Districts have been designated across the state by the IAC.
“The City of Wabash and its community partners collaborate to make Wabash the best city to raise a family and work,” said City of Wabash Mayor Scott Long. “This designation exemplifies the collaboration between organizations within Wabash to make our community a destination. I’m proud to lead a community that strives to be better every day.”
The Wabash Cultural District spans from river to rails between Paradise Spring Park and the Honeywell Center, the city said. Downtown Wabash is the hub of arts and culture with assets such as Eagles Theatre, Wabash County Museum, Honeywell Center, Wabash River, Make It Your Own Pottery Studio, public art, First Friday events, Wabash Woollen Works, and more.
“Receiving this statewide designation from the Indiana Arts Commission is a tremendous honor. Wabash joins a distinguished list of Indiana communities that uplift arts and cultural assets,” said Honeywell Arts & Entertainment CEO Tod Minnich. “Wabash is a remarkable city and the Cultural District represents how extraordinary our community is.”
In the application process beginning in 2020, Wabash said it was selected as a Spotlight Community within the Creative Community Pathway and was invited to apply for the Cultural District Consortium. Wabash’s application nominated the Wabash Cultural District with an 85-page dissertation with a focus on the vaudeville roots of the community that began in the early 1900s and can be seen at the recently renovated Eagles Theatre.
The Wabash Cultural District will continue to market the modern-day “Vaudeville Vibe” of arts and culture activities, the city said. Next steps for the Wabash Cultural District will be determined by the local committee, led by Wabash Marketplace. Additional community partners include the City of Wabash, Honeywell Arts & Entertainment, Grow Wabash County, Visit Wabash County, Wabash County Museum and a panel of artists.