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Volume 24, Number 3 — March 2017

Johnson City Arts Joins Americans for the Arts' National Study

February 29, 2016

JOHNSON CITY, TN — The Arts Mean Business. That is the message being delivered by Johnson City Arts, who announced it has joined the Arts & Economic Prosperity 5, a national study measuring the economic impact of nonprofit arts and culture organizations and their audiences. The research study is being conducted by Americans for the Arts, the nation's nonprofit organization advancing the arts and arts education. It is the fifth study over the past 20 years to measure the impact of arts spending on local jobs, income paid to local residents, and revenue generated to local and state governments.

As one of nearly 300 study partners across all 50 states plus the District of Columbia, Johnson City Arts in collaboration with local Washington County art agencies will collect detailed financial data about our local nonprofit arts and culture organizations such as our theater and dance companies, museums, festivals and arts education organizations within Washington County.


"Many people don't think of nonprofit arts and cultural organizations as businesses," said William Bailey, owner of Holidays in downtown Johnson City, "but this study will make clear that the arts are a formidable industry in our community — employing people locally, purchasing goods and services from local merchants, and helping to drive tourism and economic development."

Johnson City Arts will also collect surveys from attendees at arts and cultural events using a short, anonymous questionnaire that asks how much money they spent on items such as meals, parking and transportation, and retail shopping specifically as a result of attending the event.


Previous studies have shown that the average attendee spends $24.60 per person, per event, beyond the cost of admission. Those studies have also shown that, on average, 32 percent of arts attendees travel from outside the county in which the arts event took place, and that those cultural tourists typically spend nearly $40 per person — generating important revenue for local businesses and demonstrating how the arts drive revenue for other businesses in the community.