The West Central Illinois Arts Center in downtown Macomb is undergoing some major renovations. For starters, the facility has a new name: the Macomb Arts Center. Ron Petrin, a member of the MAC's Board of Directors, said the new name is much simpler and easier to remember.
The board also has big plans to improve the building's façade.
“I can’t ignore the fact that we’re pretty much the ugly duckling on the square,” Petrin said. “The Macomb façade improvement grant will help us be one of the gems on the square, both inside because of our programming but also outside because of the generosity of the grant.”
The MAC is asking the Macomb City Council for a $10,000 downtown renovation grant to help pay to replace all the siding on the first floor, put in new doors, and add signage to the building.
Petrin said they’re looking to replace the building’s windows next year if funding is available.
Petrin said there’s been a lot of work happening inside the building as well. The board recently raised money to replace the outdated heating and air conditioning system for the building.
The volunteer driven not-for-profit organization purchased the arts center building on the east side of the Macomb Courthouse Square in 2008 with the help of a loan from the city.
“We started slow with programming and over the years, based on response from our members and the community, we’ve developed many popular and repeatable events that support all of the arts,” Petrin said.
The Macomb Arts Center has developed signature annual events, children’s summer activities, and offered numerous other visual exhibits, musical and dance programming, art markets, and facility rentals.