Education

Westby Fine Arts Center nears completion

Westby Fine Arts Center nears completion

WESTBY, Wis (WKBT) - The Westby Fine Arts Center's doors are a few weeks away from opening. 

The 10,000 square foot facility was part of a referendum passed in April of 2016 with assistance from the Fine Arts Foundation of the Westby Area (FAFWA). 

"We have very successful music programs our students consistently score high in solo ensemble and large group contests," FAFWA president Linda Dowling said. 

Over 70 percent of the district's students participate in some form of fine arts, but the facilities offered didn't hit the right note. 

"Just the ability to have good productions, it just wasn't there," building manager Jennifer Buros said. 

The initial referendum was expected to cover a $2.9 million project, but estimated construction costs were $500,000 over budget. 

"It was surprising," Buros said.

But with some materials cuts and $800,000 in fund raising by the fine arts foundation, the dream was possible. 

"They had some definitely motivated individuals that were wanting to see this become a reality," Buros said.  "We have one chance to do this facility and we want to make sure that we do it right and whats needed, to make it a quality experience for all." 

Dowling said it took a lot of hard work by many volunteers to raise the money. 

"We spoke to all the town meetings we spoke at every music event at school," Dowling said. 

Several studies have found that students involved with music perform better in the classroom." 

"It's the only thing where you use your entire brain," Dowling said. 

Now the community has a place where all can come together and every chord will be heard. 


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