Issued by Americans for the Arts on October 3, 2016
October is National Arts & Humanities Month (NAHM)—a coast-to-coast collective recognition of the importance of culture in America. NAHM was launched by Americans for the Arts 30 years ago as National Arts Week in honor of the twentieth anniversary of the National Endowment for the Arts. In 1993, it was reestablished by Americans for the Arts and national arts partners as a month-long celebration, with goals of:
FOCUSING on the arts at local, state, and national levels;
ENCOURAGING individuals and organizations to participate in the arts;
ALLOWING governments and businesses to show their support of the arts; and
RAISING public awareness about the role the arts and humanities play in our communities and lives.
Hosting an event is an easy way to celebrate NAHM in your community, like a Creative Conversation, an open house or special performance at a local arts venue, or a Community Vision Forum. Check out our resources page for event ideas and tools.
We have tools to help you promote your event! Use our National ArtsMeet Calendar to promote your event and find others happening near you. (Don’t forget, you can use this calendar year round!)
We are excited to host the first ever National Creative Conversation on Facebook Tuesday, Oct. 25 from 9-10 p.m. ET. Creative Conversations have been a mechanism for communities to talk about the arts and culture in their area. This is a chance for everyone to gather together as a national community to share what is happening on the ground! Mark your calendars, invite your friends, grab a snack and beverage, and join the conversation!
President Obama has officially proclaimed October 2016 as National Arts and Humanities Month. In this year’s proclamation, he wrote, “In seeking to break down barriers and challenge our assumptions, we must continue promoting and prioritizing the arts and humanities, especially for our young people. In many ways, the arts and humanities reflect our national soul. They are central to who we are as Americans—as dreamers and storytellers, creators and visionaries. By investing in the arts, we can chart a course for the future in which the threads of our common humanity are bound together with creative empathy and openness.”
You can secure a proclamation from your elected officials to make National Arts & Humanities Month an official annual commemoration of the arts in your city or town. Use our sample proclamation and customize to your community.