This photo is art work using altered digital images by local artist Constance Denchy from a series on the COVID-19 experience and was included in the first ever digital First Friday this past April 3.It was great to see the innovation of the First Friday organizers and the community support for the beloved event despite being a completely different experience.The arts and culture community has been a positive force adapting and providing creative content despite our current challenges.
These are tough times.Many wonder how to adjust to a new normal that profoundly changes the way we interact and there is the reality of how people support themselves curing this time of social distancing.The arts and culture sector is especially vulnerable by the nature of the work they do.
And while there is help out there, as an artist, small non-profit or business it may overwhelming ploughing through all of the information.The Lackawanna County Arts and Culture Department and several other agencies and individuals came together to create Lackawanna County Covid-19 Creative Community Resources guide as a tool for navigating this often confusing territory.It is scary time, but through the process of developing the guide I was uplifted and inspired by people and organizations working together, sharing their knowledge, expertise and love of our arts, culture and heritage sector.It was not an easy task and required, time, energy and dedication.While recovery won’t be easy I believe, as many others, in the resiliency of Lackawanna County that has faced many challenges in dealing with its industrial past.But in recent years our creative community has acted as a catalyst for economic and community development, cultivated creativity beauty and fostered pride in our region.I believe we can thrive in this new normal and find creative ways to work together, support each other and maintain Lackawanna County a vibrant place to live and work.A big thank you to those who helped design the guide as well as those who offered guidance: City of Scranton Office of Economic and Community Development, Everhart Museum, The Lackawanna County Arts Culture and Education Council, Meoni Graphics+Promotion, NEPA Alliance, Scranton Area Foundation, Scranton Tomorrow, the Small Business Development Center and United Neighborhood Centers of NEPA.
We plan to update the guide regularly but things change quickly so make sure to follow the Lackawanna County Arts and Culture Department on Facebook and Twitter for updates. Stay safe, healthy and creative.We will get through this, and the power of arts and culture will help rebuild our communities.