Community Perspectives on Culture

How can we improve the arts and culture scene? Community members identified the following needs:

Expand Festivals
Residents spoke highly of our already successful line-up of festivals and events, and many recommended introducing more. One survey respondent, for example, noted, “It would be nice if Hinton had an annual carnival or fair.” Another suggested creating “an annual historical festival to celebrate local heritage.” These sentiments were echoed by many others who see festivals and events as a way to capitalize on our creativity while enticing both residents and visitors to take advantage of diverse leisure opportunities.

Add Performing Arts Venues
Residents expressed concern about the limited number of performance spaces and recommended more venues, indoors and out. They suggested out-door band stands, plazas/squares in local parks, amphitheatres and a conference centre.

Create More Intimate or “Third Place” Settings
One resident said, “I want a place where there are pockets of third places like the Old Grind and Woodcutter Lounge, complete with live performers, and extended evening recreation hours.” * What Do We Mean By “Third Place”? - A “third place” is an inviting, inexpensive, nearby, comfortable place to connect with friends, old and new. In combination with home (our “first place”) and workplace (our “second place”), third places help us care enough about our neighbours and our community to get involved in making them better.

Install Public Art in the Community
Suggestions include sculptures, art installations and other streetscape improvements, such as murals, fountains, flags and banners.

Celebrate Aboriginal Peoples
One survey respondent encouraged the community to learn more about the unique situation of local Aboriginal peoples, saying, “More programming, support and sensitivity to their needs is paramount. It is not the sole responsibility of the Friendship Centre to address their unique needs.”

Expand Arts Programming
There was a call for a more comprehensive arts program in addition to the one offered through Creative Campus.

Build Fundraising Partnerships
Local individuals and organizations need to be involved in fundraising initiatives that support the preservation of our rich history. To this end, residents suggested partnerships involving the Foothills Research Institute and surrounding communities.

Increase Attendance
Organizations of some arts and cultural events expressed concern about the low levels of paid attendance for live performances in the community.
“How about having concerts every weekend in summer? Tourists are looking for something to do, and if there are concerts, they will stay in Hinton. Otherwise they will go to Jasper.” - Community Consultation Participant