The ArtsCenter Receives Record $1.6 Million Grant from the Nicholson Foundation


By Patrick Phelps-McKeown

Largest Gift in The ArtsCenter’s History Will Go Towards New Home

The ArtsCenter is pleased to announce that it has received a $1.6 million grant from The Nicholson Foundation, a major supporter of The ArtsCenter’s mission and programming for nearly a decade. This gift will go towards a Capital Campaign for the construction of a new ArtsCenter facility on Jones Ferry Road in Carrboro, NC.

“The Nicholson Foundation has been supporting The ArtsCenter for 9 years and is delighted in watching it grow into the vital community asset it is today, offering a remarkable breadth of programming in fine arts, craft, and performing arts for all ages. The quality of teaching and management shines, and the spirit of the place is supportive, inclusive, and inspiring. All this is happening in an old grocery store with few windows! It is time for The ArtsCenter to have a home that can showcase the imagination within so that it can flourish, embrace, and inspire more members of our community. For this reason, The Nicholson Foundation is excited to be making a cornerstone gift to this Capital Campaign,” said Barbara McFadyen, a Trustee of The Nicholson Foundation.

“This building will provide a hub for new innovative programming through a cutting-edge facility that includes state-of-the-art visual and performing arts studios and promotes more opportunities for creative
community engagement,” said The ArtsCenter’s Executive Director, Dan Mayer.

“The ArtsCenter is delighted to remain in Carrboro, its home for the last 45 years. Our deep roots in the area allow us to continue to serve audiences and students throughout Orange County as well as communities in the region,” said The ArtsCenter’s Board Chair, Dr. Bernadette Pelissier.

This transformative gift has set the pace for The ArtsCenter’s $5.5M Capital Campaign to construct a new building. The ArtsCenter has assembled a world-class team of partners on this project, including the architecture firm Clearscapes, developer Madrock Advisors, and fundraising counsel Gail Perry and Associates. The ArtsCenter is in the process of gathering stakeholder input and welcomes ideas and suggestions from area residents.

The ArtsCenter’s new home and Capital Campaign are the latest chapter in its over 45-year history of providing high-quality, accessible arts education and enrichment for residents of Orange County and beyond.

More information on the new building and Capital Campaign can be found at

For more information about The Nicholson Foundation, visit:

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