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Arts Council - Minutes     
Wednesday, May 12, 2004

Call To Order:

Chair Barry Massoudi called the meeting to order at 7:30 pm in Room A-4 at the Community Center at Mercerview, 8236 SE 24th Street, Bldg B, Mercer Island, Washington.



Roll Call:

Members Susan Landon, Philip King, Beth Brennan, Heidi O’Brien, Judith Powers Leithe, Barry Massoudi and City Councilman Steve Litzow (8:45 pm) were present. Members Erin Curtiss, Margaret Minnick, James Dugan and Katalin Pearman were absent.

Recreation Supervisor Jennifer Berner and Administrative Assistant Eileen Trifts were present.




There were no appearances




It was moved by Member Susan Landon to;


Approve Regular Meeting Minutes of April 14, 2004 as written.


It was seconded and the motion passed.



Treasurer’s Report:

Phil King reported gave a financial report to the Council.  28.6% of the budget had been spent as of April 20, 2004.  Out of the annual budget of $77,424.00, $56,344.83 is still remaining.  Actual revenue for the year to date is $10,382.41.  More is expected through the remaining months of the year.  The trust fund balance is $10,175.97.



Secretary’s Report:

No Report



Chair’s Report:

Jennifer Berner reported on her and Barry’s attendance at the last City Council meeting where they presented the 2004 Revised Work Plan.  It was approved by the City Council.  She said they will need to return on July 19 with a 2005/06 Proposed Work Plan.  Jennifer and Barry will prepare something as a starting point and get feedback from the remaining Arts Council Members.  Barry asked each of them to mail him with their ideas prior to he and Jennifer’s preparation of the initial document. 


Additionally, Jennifer and Barry will come up with some possible dates for an Arts Council Retreat where they can hammer out the 2005/06 Proposed Work Plan.


Barry distributed copies of a Spring/Summer events calendar he has prepared for the Arts Council. The following changes and additions were noted: (1)the teen outdoor film has been moved from August 22 to July 10th during Summer Celebration, (2) Discovery Days will be held at the Outdoor Gallery on June 12 and (3) Wooden O’ Directors will be making a presentation at the Library on June 18. It was agreed that everyone will email Barry with calendar items and he will provide an update at each Arts Council meeting.


Susan Landon asked if the calendar items could be added to the web site.  Jennifer said she thought they could.


Barry advised the council members that 4Culture is seeking volunteers for a live audition showcase on May 22 and 23 at Music Works Northwest in Bellevue.  He provided flyers with additional information.



Performance Arts:

Beth reported that Key Bank will be our main sponsor for MMIP.  Sponsorships are up to $8,900 to date.  The MMIP brochure is almost ready to go to press.


Beth reported that she had recently visited Cord’ Alene and was very impressed with a large sign in the middle of town advertising bands and dates.  She said that her husband had volunteered to build a similar sign for Mercerdale Park.  Jennifer advised that there may be some sign ordinances, but that she would check into it.  Further discussion brought up the suggestion of a large banner, and posting banners in private parking lots (Walgreen’s, QFC, Key Bank, etc) for all of the Council’s activities.  Jennifer suggested the Arts Council research it further and how it might be funded.   Beth liked the idea of banners, but stressed that she would like to see the MMIP sign in Mercerdale Park where the performances are held.  Phil King suggested additionally approaching the design commission about the possibility of a kiosk in the downtown area.




No Report



Public Art:

In Margaret Minnick’s absence, Jennifer Berner reported that the Stairwell project artist and architect are working together now.  He will present to a panel on June 7.  On June 9th it will come to the Arts Council for approval, and on June 21 to the City Council for final approval.  It will need to be in the community center bid specs scheduled to go out in early July.




Susan Landon reported that the John Geiss pieces are being installed in the Outdoor Gallery on Friday.  Additionally, there will be some additional new figurative pieces installed.  There will be as many as three.  They all have movement and are abstract in design.  The Gallery Committee is looking for more substantial pieces that look more like art.


With regard to the Indoor Gallery, we have several options, but we need to determine budget and staff time.  Judy Leithe advised that she has spoken with the manager at Key Bank and she has indicated an interest in displaying some art.




Judy Leithe reported that the Librarian was unable to be at the meeting tonight.  She suggested the Arts Council bring some treats and make our first meeting at the Library festive.  She suggested we plan not to depend on the Library to set up or break down our meeting room. 


Judy suggested a “Friends of the Arts Council” program as a good way to keep departing Arts Council members involved.  Many people don’t feel they have the time to serve full time on the Arts Council, but they might be interested in participating on specific programs or when we need some outside assistance.  Jennifer suggested the Arts Council spend some time discussing this and working it into the 2005/06 Work Plan. 




Community Arts:

No Report




Phil King reported that he recently read an article in the MI Reporter regarding a high school student who did a portrait and got rave acclaim from a national group.  He suggested the arts council pay attention to things like that and send a letter of recognition to the student.


Phil announced that he has reluctantly made the decision to leave the Arts Council when his term expires on May 31.  He will keep the “Friends of the Arts Council” idea in mind. 


Jennifer made a presentation of a watch to Phil from the City of Mercer Island and the Parks and Recreation Department in gratitude for his years of service to the City and the Arts Council.


Jennifer announced that Heidi O’Brien will also be leaving as her term ends on May 31.  She is moving out of State in July.  Jennifer made a presentation of a watch to Heidi from the City of Mercer Island and the Parks and Recreation Department in gratitude for her years of service to the City and the Arts Council. 



Staff Report:

Jennifer reminded everyone that the Community Center will close its doors for demolition at 5:00 pm on May 28.  The Parks and Recreation Department Offices will relocate to Luther Burbank Park Administrative Building the first week of June.  The telephones will not be operational at Luther, so staff will be unreachable at their direct numbers.



City Council Report: 

Steve Litzow advised the Arts Council that everyone on the City Council was pleased with the revised work plan that was submitted.  There is some question as to weather or not this continues to be the right structure for the Arts Council.  He felt certain the Arts Council would be addressing this at their retreat.  On June 22 the City Council will be reviewing and setting priorities where money will be spent in 2005-06 budgets.  He did not anticipate any changes in the Arts Council.  Steve asked if the Arts Council has settled on a retreat date yet.  Jennifer indicated that they were polling members by email to select a date when the largest number of Arts Council members would be able to attend.



Adjournment:   9:20 pm


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