In just three years, the Maple Grove Arts Center has established itself as a model organization for the arts in Minnesota. From hosting several successful fundraisers, to offering a slew of classes that blanket several mediums, to delving into realms previously untouched by arts organizations—Scott Hansen’s Comedy Tech, for one—the Maple Grove Arts Center has turned ripples to waves in the arts community in a relatively short period of time. Those waves haven’t gone unnoticed outside of the waters of Maple Grove.
Lorrie Link, founder and executive director of the Maple Grove Arts Center, was honored with a Gem Award in the Twin Cities TOSCA (Theatre, Opera, Shakespeare, Culture and Art) Awards in October.
Twin Cities TOSCA, which hosts arts events and publishes a quarterly arts magazine (Exploring TOSCA), recognized people and organizations striving to promote arts and culture in Minnesota.
“While we love Hamlet’s statement ‘the play’s the thing,’ we at TOSCA also believe that the audience is the thing, too. We are especially proud of those who have made meaningful efforts to invite, entice and welcome citizens into the world of arts and culture in Minnesota,” says Gail Weber, owner of Twin Cities TOSCA, in a press release.
Link was honored for her role as founder of the Maple Grove Arts Center, but also for continuously making it accessible to the public and user-friendly.
“It was an honor to be chosen for the Art Gem award,” says Link. “What the award means to me is that the Maple Grove Arts Center is finally recognized as a viable and an effective arts facility, along with the help of our sponsors, board, teachers and students.”
December will mark the center’s three-year anniversary in Maple Grove. Link, along with a supporting cast of talented teachers and artists, have successfully turned Maple Grove into an arts hub. But they won’t stop there.
“The success of the arts center is a good thing because I think we are just beginning,” Link says. “With a presence in our community, we hope to grow the center so that we can encompass all arts, including theater.”
Twin Cities TOSCA recognized the following Minnesotans for their exceptional contributions in connecting Minnesota citizens to the state’s arts and culture:
2009-2010 TOSCAR Recipients
Theatre Theatre in the Round
Opera Margaret Meyers
Shakespeare The Great River Shakespeare Festival
Culture Twin Cities Daily Planet
Art Leon Zobel
2009-2010 TOSCA GEM Recipients
Lorrie Link (Maple Grove Arts Center founder)
Scott Pakudaitis (Frequent theatre attender)
Jackie Regan (Theatre Volunteer of the Year)
Brian Hesser (Theatre Volunteer of the Year)