Shelby County saw the emergence of organizations supporting the Arts through various avenues starting in the late 1970’s and early ‘80’s. The Shelby County Players theatre troop, Blue River Community Choir, Shelbyville Community Band, and Shelby Artists Guild Association (SAGA) each acted to promote and support a specific facet or genre.
In the mid-‘90’s, The Strand Theatre was refurbished and revitalized.It is now a vibrant venue hosting over 125 events each year. Our community also saw the establishment of Arts Fests—a weekend event that soon morphed into several events by partnering with the Grover Museum and Shelby Co. Public Library to span the entire summer season. In 2012, the Shelby County Writers Group was established through a public/private partnership with the Shelby County Library, SAA, and Three Sisters Books and Gifts who were also instrumental in establishing the Shelby County Reads Program. It was, in part, because of these endeavors, that the initial Shelby Arts Council was conceived.
The purpose of the Arts Council was to nurture and support the arts and it did an admirable job until it dissolved and was reconstituted as the now Shelby Arts Alliance.
The Alliance’s mission is to act as an ‘umbrella organization’ to support, promote and nurture the Arts in Shelby County—this includes education, sponsorship, and creating awareness in partnership with the city/county governments.
The all-volunteer board meets bimonthly at the Blue River Community Foundation. Sub-committees such as Community Outreach, Music in the Park, and Membership and Finance meet depending on need.