Concord has been rated one of the safest and best places to live - not only in New Hampshire, but in the country.
Creative industries in the Greater Concord area are flourishing and the Capital Region is becoming known as the cultural center of New Hampshire. Through the Chamber's Creative Concord Committee, arts, business and community leaders have joined forces to study and measure the creative economy in our region, and create a long-range, strategic plan and strategies to build and maximize the creative capital of the Greater Concord region.
To celebrate Concord’s newly revitalized downtown, the committee hosted Capital Arts Fest in May of 2017. The day-long festival showcased the Capital Region as an arts and cultural destination, with more than 20 complimentary cultural events, including live art and craft demonstrations, musical and theatrical performances, historic walking tours and more happening throughout the day and the Greater Concord community. Visitors who turned the corner at Capital Plaza looked up to see hundreds of colorful umbrellas playfully hanging overhead and reflected in puddles and neighboring office windows. Kimball Jenkins School of Art in collaboration with Mill Brook Gallery & Sculpture Garden rolled out its Big Bicycle Project —bicycle-themed sculptures created by community members installed along Main Street for all to enjoy. And internationally-renowned rock opera theatrical performance group Squonk Opera traveled from Philadelphia to headline the day's festivities, performing its newest Cycle Sonic act twice at Capital Plaza on Main Street. Press coverage leading up to the Capital Arts Fest included the Boston Globe.
Art continues to spring up around the city. In October, Kimball Jenkins School of Art installed a 36' tall mural on the historic Ralph Pill Building. It's visible from I-93 at Exit 14 to the delight of passersby and the local teens who made it. The mural isn't the first public art installation created by young artists that's having an impact on the community. In 2016, Kimball Jenkins unveiled the 24' Haley Rae Martin Mural off Main Street adjacent to Phenix Hall.
Creative Concord continues to seek ways in which to capitalize on this important and growing sector of our economy. The City of Concord is busy planning its First Annual Outdoor Sculpture Exhibit in collaboration with the Greater Concord Chamber of Commerce's Creative Concord committee. The exhibit will run from May 2018-April 2019 on Main Street in Concord with details about the opening to follow. Stay tuned! Sculptors, access the entry form here.
Greater Concord is one of four area nonprofit arts and cultural institutions that recently participated in the 2017 Arts & Economic Prosperity Survey, organized nationally every five years by the Washington D.C.-based nonprofit Americans for the Arts. The study measures the direct economic impact of the institutions and audience spending, which represent only a percentage of the overall creative economy impact. Multipliers such as spending on hotels, restaurants, shopping, etc., are not factored in.
The numbers are impressive and support what Creative Concord, the Chamber's standing committee to advance the creative economy, already knew — the creative sector is one of the fastest-growing segments of our local and regional economy. Not surprising when you consider all of the arts and cultural institutions in the Capital Region, and combine that with all the for profit businesses that use artistic creativity to produce products and services, including graphic and web designers, photographers, architects, writers, etc.
The 2017 Arts & Economic Prosperity Study reported that total industry expenditures amounted to nearly $31.2 million dollars annually in the Greater Concord region alone — an increase of $13.5 million from the previous study. This new figure is very conservative considering that the entire for-profit creative sector and the ripple effect of local spending were not included. Nonprofit cultural institutions in Greater Concord support more than 950 jobs, generating $22.4 million in household income to local residents. The annual impact to local and state government revenue is $2.8 million.
Summary of the 2017 Arts & Economic Prosperity Survey on Greater Concord (link to the full study above).
CLICK HERE to see some ideas to update Concord's image to the world and read Greater Concord Chamber of Commerce President Tim Sink's "The next big thing" blog , where he advocates that redeveloping Concord's untapped opportunity corridor, I-93 through Bow and Concord, would be one of the most transformative actions city leaders can take to showcase a destination city and welcome visitors.
Concord welcomes sidewalk performers
Perform live in downtown Concord at one of four locations! Here's the latest information on busking.
And The Concord Main Street Piano Project fills downtown with music:
Presenting arts organizations for the best in live contemporary and classical music and theatre:
Check out the Concord Community Music School's video made possible by Heartwood Media's Nonprofit Challenge!
Galleries and venues to experience original art created by local, regional and national artists:
Concord Arts Market
Gallery at Concord City Auditorium, "The Audi"
Kimball Jenkins Art School
League of NH Craftsmen
McAuliffe-Shepard Discovery Center
Mill Brook Gallery & Sculpture Garden
New Hampshire State House
NHTI-Concord's Community College Library Gallery
The Place Studio and Gallery
Red River Theatres Gallery
The Crumpacker Gallery at St. Paul's School
The Robert M. Larsen Gallery at Sulloway Law Firm
Places to enjoy a wide variety of live music around the city:
Concord is a fantastic place to enjoy bands and local performers! Get a detailed list of venues that host live music on our Music, Arts and Culture web page.
Don't miss these annual cultural events:
Concord Multicultural Festival
Residents from other countries gather once a year at Concord's Multicultural Festival to celebrate their native cultures through music, dance, food, crafts, storytelling and and other interactive and engaging exhibits.
Market Days Festival
Intown Concord's three-day, summer street festival is free fun for all ages! Head Downtown to enjoy street vendors, local food, live performances, kids activities, craft beer tent, exhibitors and more.
SNOB Film Festival
The SNOB (Somewhat North of Boston) Film Festival showcases and supports independent filmmaking. It strives to bring films to the area that local audiences might not otherwise see in a relaxed, fun environment.
Looking for scenic film locations with close proximity to Boston? New Hampshire has it all.
Check out these sites for other events and programs:
www.yourconcordtv.org Watch the latest "Arts in Focus" program for an interesting and entertaining look at how the arts are thriving in Concord!
Schools of the Arts:
Concord Community Music School
Concord Dance Academy
Kimball Jenkins Art School
New England College's graduate and undergraduate programs in art, design, theatre and writing
NHTI, Concord's Community College's Visual Arts Degree Program
Plymouth State University's undergraduate programs in studio art, graphic design, music and theatre, and graduate programs in art education.
Check back often for page updates!