State Designates Gloucester Rocky Neck Cultural District as One of First Cultural Districts in MA

The Rocky Neck Art Colony is pleased to announce The Massachusetts Cultural Council has named Gloucester’s Rocky Neck Cultural District one of the first state-designated Cultural Districts in Massachusetts.

MCC’s Board voted unanimously today to approve Gloucester’s Rocky Neck Cultural District in this first group of state-sponsored Cultural Districts during its meeting at the Isabella Stewart Gardner Museum in the Fenway.

Gloucester’s Rocky Neck Cultural District is a compact, walkable area encompassing the peninsula of Rocky Neck, home of the Rocky Neck Art Colony, one of America’s oldest working art colonies and the critically acclaimed Gloucester Stage Company on its boarder. With a concentration of cultural facilities, activities, and assets including galleries and restaurants, the district attracts visitors to enjoy and experience a range of cultural and commercial activities.

Both State Senator Bruce Tarr and Mayor Carolyn Kirk emphasized how proud they were of Gloucester for earning this recognition, with Mayor Kirk writing in her recommendation ” A Cultural District certification will help draw attention to, as well as build upon the cultural, historical and artistic attractions that already exist in Gloucester . . . The presence of the arts and cultural opportunities enhances property values and profitability of surrounding businesses, expands the tax base and provides employment opportunities”.

‘Our Cultural Districts Initiative shines a brand new spotlight on the breadth and depth of creative activity happening in every corner of Massachusetts,’ said Anita Walker, MCC Executive Director. ‘Each of these communities has something very special to offer a visitor ‘ whether they are coming from across town or across the globe. With this designation, these cities can now take their cultural life to a new level.’

Supporters from each of the newly designated Cultural Districts successfully petitioned their local governments to endorse their plans, and then worked with MCC and local partners to define the objectives and geographical contours of their district. Hundreds of nonprofit leaders, local businesses and civic groups, working artists, and citizen activists contributed to this process. The result is five distinct, well defined creative hubs.