“The Milford Arts Council shall support and foster artistic, cultural and educational opportunities for the benefit of the greater Milford community through the creation of environments and programs for artists to work and present; as well as encourage the promotion, development, acceptance and appreciation of the Arts.”
The Milford Arts Council (d.b.a. 2012) was founded in 1971 when a variety of clubs and groups came together for their 501(c)3 as the Milford Fine Arts Council. They originally met in the Mary Taylor building, now home to the Milford Chamber of Commerce. In 1984 the decision was made to find a more permanent home for the performances, exhibitions, classes and theater that were scattered throughout the city of Milford. The abandoned eastbound train station was selected and after years of fundraising and extensive renovations, the MAC opened the Milford Center for the Arts in 1995.
The MAC Center for the Arts is a beautifully restored civil war era building and is on the National Historic Register. It offers a black box stage with beautiful acoustics, intimate seating for up to 110 in theater or café configuration, a projection theater system with a 10X20’ drop screen, exhibition area, classroom, offices, kitchenette and concessions lobby.
Every year the MAC presents community theatre, live music concerts with international, regional and local talent, exhibitions, classes, workshops, films and lectures. Additionally, MAC partners with fellow non-profits for particular events highlighting their missions and messages to share with the public in a open environment for greater exposure. MAC offers support to our students through mini-grants, a yearly scholarship through the Chamber of Commerce and mentorship to further artistic exposure, experience and education. The MAC works hard in developing relationships with local businesses for sponsorship and investments guaranteeing our continued success and helping to keep our ticket prices affordable for our patrons.
“Bridges”, with BRIDGES, A Community Support System; artists were invited to present images of transformation, the journey and passages.
“Trees”, with Milford Trees, Tree Commission; artists were invited to depict trees, re-imagine trees, symbolize trees, etc. Milford Trees hosted Arboretum tours, leaf rubbings and lectures.
“Metro North train platform photography”; partnered with the City of Milford Community and Economic Development Department and called to area photographers to submit iconic photographs for display along both sides of the Milford Transit platform. These beautiful 19 images by 8 different photographers welcomes all who come by rail to Milford, taking the place of 19 blighted billboards unwanted by Metro North marketing.
“Milford’s 375th Anniversary”; Held a logo contest and awarded two artists—one a local high school student. Hosted a Plein Air event.
“Girl Scout Gold Award”; mentored local high school student in developing an after school art club, matched an instructor and aided in getting an audience with Devon Rotary for funding.
“Milford Education Foundation”; partnered in major fundraiser called the “Chair-ity Event”, matching artist mentors to high school student groups to paint student-made Adirondack chairs for auction.
“MAC FEST”; revamped traditional NE Arts & Crafts Festival to include multiple community partners, highlight local businesses as well as MAC programs, local food vendors, pop-up workshops and plein air event.
Our Community & Business Investors and Partners:
The Connecticut Commission on the Arts
The Community Foundation of Greater New Haven
The City of Milford
The Community & Economic Development Department of Milford
Milford Downtown Business Asociation
The Milford Public Library
The Milford Education Foundation
The Milford Bank: MAC Investor
The Meisenheimer Foundation: MAC Investor
Cody White: MAC Investor
Milford Trees/Tree Commission: sponsor “trees” exhibit
Milford Pediatrics: sponsor Milford Student exhibit
Milford Photo: sponsor Milford Photo Expo (*coming in 2016)
Ultimate Interiors: sponsor Red Carpet Gala
The Milford Arts Council is actively engaged in providing a wonderful experience in the arts for as many people as we can – not only in Milford but the surrounding communities as well. MAC has a great staff, fabulous volunteers, wonderful sponsors and donors as well as enthusiastic audiences who patronize our events.
There are two facilities, the Center for the Arts (the Eastbound Train Station) and the Walnut Beach Firehouse Gallery which are both bursting with activities. Please check our website to locate a calendar of events.
This year, we are busy preparing many new events and programs for the upcoming year. Our artists are engaged in music, drama, visual arts, writing and dance. We always encourage new members to join and share their passion for the arts.
We are most appreciative of the City of Milford’s support for the arts. We realize that those who are governing know the importance of including the arts in the lives of its citizens.
This year we will celebrate our 41st year of serving the community. We hope you will continue to support our endeavors.