Opportunities for access and collaboration expand with partnership between Tacoma Creates and Tacoma Public Library
In 2018, Tacoma voters approved a new initiative that would use a slight sales tax increase to strengthen access to cultural organizations and public programming. The initiative won by a landslide, passing in every reporting precinct, and Tacoma Creates was established as the first voter-supported Cultural Access Program in Washington State.
In 2019, leaders from Tacoma Public Library and Tacoma Creates established a partnership that would allow arts, culture, heritage, and science organizations to offer programs in eight public libraries throughout the city’s diverse neighborhoods.
The library explained how the expansion of programmatic offerings is a benefit of the partnership.
“In 2022, 27 Tacoma Creates-supported organizations presented 75 programs, serving over 2,000 people,” stated Amita Lonial, Tacoma Public Library Assistant Director.
“This partnership greatly increased the number of high-quality, innovative, and enriching cultural programs the library was able to share with patrons of all ages,” Lonial continued.
“It’s been so exciting to see the range of programming for both youth and adults – from hands-on art workshops to talks about local history and cultural celebrations – and lots of creative collaborations, too,” said Tacoma Creates Program Manager Lisa Jaret.
One example of collaboration is between Communities for a Healthy Bay, an ecological organization, and Hilltop Artists, a youth-focused glassblowing program, who teamed up to host fused glass tile workshops. The tiles were assembled and grouped together to create a display about local ocean health in a library.
“This type of collaborative connection shows the expansive nature of the partnership between Tacoma Public Library and Tacoma Creates,” stated Jaret.
“There are over 30 organizations scheduled to present programs in our next program year, and I can’t wait to see what they do,” she continued.
To learn more about Tacoma Creates, visit tacomacreates.org.
To see the partnership between Tacoma Creates and Tacoma Public Library in action, check out an upcoming Tacoma Creates-supported event at your local library.