East Brunswick Arts Coalition officially launched

Rebecca Nowalski

EAST BRUNSWICK–Striving to further expand art and cultural opportunities for residents, Mayor Brad Cohen has announced the formation of the East Brunswick Arts Coalition.

The coalition is a new nonprofit group created to promote art and culture in the township, according to a prepared statement from the East Brunswick Department of Recreation, Parks and Community Services.

Chartered as a non-profit charitable organization, the coalition will be empowered to fundraise for current and planned arts and cultural activities in a community already known for its diverse range of arts and heritage events, according to the statement.

The coalition’s 12 member board of directors consists of seven individuals appointed by Cohen with the advice and consent of the Township Council. There is one representative apiece drawn from each of the township’s existing Arts Commission, Museum Corporation, Human Relations Commission, Historical Society and Playhouse 22, according to the statement.

“Each of our committees has a long list of exciting and innovative projects that would benefit East Brunswick residents and the surrounding communities. Funding is usually the big problem as township budgets are very tight,” Cohen said in the statement. “The main function of the arts coalition is to raise the funds from public and private sources in order to help promote the vast number of programs our residents would like to see. The [coalition] will accelerate that process.”

The Middlesex County town of 50,000 residents is home to several anchor cultural institutions including the East Brunswick Museum, the East Brunswick Public Library and Playhouse 22. East Brunswick enjoys a wide range of annual festivals including PurimFest, Deaf Fest, Phyllis Noar Puppetry Festival, Egyptian Festival, Polish Heritage Festival and Raritan Native American Heritage Celebration, according to the statement.

The township’s biggest public art event, the annual East Brunswick Art and Music Festival presented by East Brunswick Arts Commission, will return on June 1.

“We know there are many artists of all kinds creating great work in East Brunswick today. The [coalition] will help us support them and provide wider recognition of their work in the community and beyond. At the same time, the coalition will ensure that our history is preserved and celebrated,” Cohen said in the statement. “And finally, we want to promote our diversity by supporting programs developed by our Human Relations Council. I have always believed that there is always room at our table for more guests, even if it means getting a bigger table. We just need the funds to make a bigger table.”

For more information, visit www.eastbrunswick.org/content/202/283/1195.aspx or call 732-390-6797.