History of the Arts Council

Since its beginnings in 1949 with $7,200 in seed money from the Junior League of Winston-Salem, The Arts Council has gained a reputation as an effective and efficient organization to marshal support for the arts. Throughout the decades, The Arts Council has provided proactive leadership, sparked cultural growth and provided funds through grant programs to create a flourishing cultural environment.

The Arts Council of Winston-Salem and Forsyth County continues to be a model for similar organizations throughout the country. In the late 1980s, city and county leaders recognized The Arts Council as the official local arts agency and conduit for public arts funding. The ability to raise funds on an annual basis and enhance cultural resources is the cornerstone of our service to artists, arts and cultural organizations, and the entire community.

The Arts Council owns the Milton Rhodes Center for the Arts, the Hanesbrands Theatre and the Hanes Community Center (which houses The Arts Council Theatre).