Midtown Arts District Communications & Branding Workgroup meeting minutes from 7/29/2015

Below in the meeting minutes are some discussion points that came up during our face to face meeting on 7/27 and they ranged far and wide. However, we did decide that we should utilize two mechanisms to communicate privately as a group for now, which is critical and evolve to more open communication channels as needed. This blog will be where communications that need to persist will be enabled. So, documents, references, status updates can be created and stored here.  More interactive communications can be done on the Kingston Arts District private Facebook page here:  https://www.facebook.com/groups/1506182756292355/ .   If you haven’t joined already, please do so.

Our next task is to start a discussion about branding, but we are really dependent on input from the other groups first. Hopefully, we can status from the other groups collected here an then determine our timeline for next steps.

—— Kevin

—————————————————————

Meeting minutes


M.A.D.  /    Midtown Arts District

Midtown Arts District Communications & Branding Workgroup

MEMBERS: (please add your contact information)

Kevin Godbey: KingstonHappenings.Org,  Brickyard Ventures,  godbey.kevin@gmail.com

Lynn Woods:  Lynn Woods lynn_woods@icloud.com (my comments in red)

Rick Whelan:  rick.whelan@gmail.com

Deborah Mills Thackrey: deborah@dmt-art.com, (408) 623-9888

Renee Darmstadt:  Cornell Street Studios <rdarmstadt514@gmail.com>

Woody Pirtle (?):  woody@pirtledesign.com

Sara Beames (?):   <INFO@BEAMES.COM>

Courtney Williams (?):  courtney.hvhullabaloo@gmail.com

LINKS:

– publicity:   http://upstater.com/midtown-kingston-arts-study-momentum-form/

OTHER RELATED AREA INITIATIVES:

– “Build a Better Broadway” Greg Swansea Gregg Swanzey

– Rupco projects

– Rail Trail / bike trails, greenway, solar

– Mid-town Rising / Shalom Makers

ISSUES AND QUESTIONS FOR OUR GROUP:

– Tools and methods to collaborate as a larger group, with the other committees

  • Private Facebook page
  • This website(blog)

– How to reach out to the public? Who are they?

  • neighbors residents
  • artists
  • tourism (NYC, national)

– target audiences (youth, seniors, businesses, artists, tourists)

– interpretive signage, historical information (needs to be durable)

– Map and borders of the area (other committee)

  • Greenkill, Clinton, St. James, Albany Ave

– Name of the Project / District?:

  • M.A.D.  Midtown Arts District

(opportunities for slogans like:

– a definition for the public

– a creative brief

– what we are not, a “calendar”,

– Why would people go to our website? How do we market it?

– PR and articles to write: Public interest, how people dress in the area? how houses are getting fixed up (cool renovations),

– Historical associations

– set deadlines and milestones

– how do we make sure this effort is not superficial but keeps in mind; job creation, out reach to children and the poor, … Tone we set, creative, inclusive, responsible to the environment, …

– arts training is about creative thinking, applicable to any occupation

PERFORMANCE VENUES:

  • Ulster Performing Arts Center / UPAC
  • The Anchor
  • 721 Media

ARTS BUSINESSES IN THE DISTRICT (inventory):

  • Cornell St. Studios
  • The Lace Mill Lofts & Gallery
  • Bailey Pottery
  • R & F Paints
  • Monster
  • Rhinebeck Art Supplies
  • The Art Bar Gallery
  • 721 Media / Recording studios, radio stations, performance space
  • The Shirt Factory

– Color Tech (printing co’s)

– Center for Creative Education (Drew hiphop)

– POK: Percussion Orchestra of Kingston

– ArtBridge (Raleigh Green)

– graphic designers, architects, …

ISSUES OTHER M.A.D. GROUPS ARE DISCUSSING:

  • studies of other cities’ Arts Districts, (Milwaukee – the big one, lots of money; Raleigh, NC. Research from members on topic.
  • mission statement,
  • district area definition
  • programming
  • business model, organizational method
  • funding

OUR POTENTIAL METHODS FOR PUBLICITY:

  • website (who will run it? will they be compensated?)
  • WordPress Blog, (if we allow comments and discussions we need a moderator to keep out trolls)
  • brochure
  • booklet, magazine with listings and ads
  • Arts Walks
  • Ambassadors, like Frank from Theatre on the Road (put him in a costume and have him talk and evangelize)

CHANNELS FOR DISTRIBUTING THE INFORMATION:

– print

– email

– social media

– website

– radio and TV media

– signage, Wayfinding signage, coordinate with other group initiatives on signage

– face-to-face, ambassadors

– aggregator site

– chamber of commerce

– YouTube videos / linked to Facebook

– approach like a magazine, establish a strategy, departments with different information

– interviews with business owners

GOALS OF THE PROJECT:

  • urban renewal?
  • raising community pride
  • What new services and goods does the area lack that we might want to attract to the area?
  • to be inclusive of the existing neighbors and cultures
  • be aware of the problems with gentrification and pushing out the existing populous (goal: raise all boats)
  • attract more residents and visitors
  • celebrate what’s unique and positive about Midtown
  • brand the area and create a positive identity
  • connect positive attributes of Midtown with rest of city
  • capitalize on Midtown’s location in center of city
  • engage youth and other sectors in Midtown

BRANDING:

– need mission statement before we can begin

– what are the unique personality traits of Kingston? (in particular Midtown)

– list adjectives and adverbs that suit the area (re-use, industrial, green, solar, creative enterprises…)

HOW TO COMMUNICATE TO VARIOUS “STOCKHOLDERS” WHO INCLUDE:

  • Us
  • Midtown Arts Businesses
  • Local governments
  • Consumers
  • Visitors / Tourism
  • Youth (local schools and neighborhood children), Education
  • new residents

RELEVANT LOCAL PUBLICATIONS TO PARTNER WITH:

  • Upstater
  • Chronogram
  • Ulster Publishing?

MEDIA:

  • 98.1, KZE calendar

ARTISTS IN MIDTOWN:

  • studios in

– The Lace Factory

– Cornell St. Studios

– The Shirt Factory

– along Greenkill Avenue (i.e. Brush and Pajama factories)

OTHER TO CATEGORIZE: (I believe this relates to content—substance of what we’d communicate and publicize)

– Art in Public Places

– Art Classes

– photography studios

– Dance

– “36 hours in Midtown Kingston”, “A Day in Kingston’s Midtown Arts District” breakfast thru a UPAC performance (B&Bs), “Spotlight”,

– Get businesses to always mention that they are located in the “Midtown Arts District”

– Issues: Midtown is a neglected but rich area

– Facts & Figures

– Bring Kingston back!

– where to stay, where to eat

– “Screw You Woodstock” in other words, they get all the publicity and tourism while we remain the neglected cousin, look into how the town of Hudson is marketing itself as an arts hub. PR

– Creative Placemaking

PHOTOGRAPHY & OTHER IMAGERY (use creative inspiration to translate dross of Midtown into gold of art—i.e. beautiful photographs of abandoned storefronts)

– empty storefronts to record over time

ROADBLOCKS

– generational poverty

– Henry (?)

– issues that getting a consensus between artists is like herding cats

INSPIRATION & ROLE MODELS:

– Humans of New York

– Chemistry / physics teacher at Kingston high school who teaches the science of mixing pigments etc…

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