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Economic Impact of the Arts in Wayne County

The staff of the Arts Council of Wayne County, with help from the staff of the Paramount Theatre and volunteers, has completed a year-long Americans for the Arts study to guage the economic impact of non-profit arts organizations in Wayne County. Thanks to the DGDC, Mount Olive College, the Paramount Theatre, and the Wayne County Development Alliance for sponsoring this endeavor in partnership with the ACWC.

This important study is proof that the ARTS MEAN BUSINESS. Not only does the work of these organizations, enhance the quality of life for Wayne County's citizens, it also shows that the non-profit art and culture organizations have vital economic impact. The direct economic activity of the Arts Council, the Paramount Theatre and the 12 participating non-profit arts groups and their audiences was $2.8 million. Of that $2.8 million, the nonprofit arts and culture organizations spent $1.5 million and leveraged a remarkable $1.4 million in additional spending by arts and culture audiences. This spending of both the organizations and their audiences supports 90 full-time equivalent jobs!

Additionally, the organizations generated $140,000 in local government revenues and $127,000 in state government revenues. Attendees to arts events spent an average of $13.82 per person. That is $13.23 per person spending for Wayne County residents and $16.21 per person spending for non-residents (this excludes the cost of admission to events).

The surveys did not just focus on local questions but also asked, "If this event were not happening, would you have traveled to another community to attend a similar cultural experience?" 50.6% of Wayne County's resident attendees said they would have traveled to a different community in order to attend a similar event. and 59.6% of Wayne County's non-resident attendees said the same.