Artists and community leaders from around western Massachusetts are gathering in Turner’s Falls this weekend for an annual conference on developing what they call the “creative economy.” The Creative Economy Summit is in its fourth year. Beth Reynolds owns a photography studio and school in Greenfield, and has participated in two previous conferences. She says the event is an opportunity for artists, businesses, and municipal leaders to make connections and collaborate.
“Sometimes we have wonderful ideas but we’re just not sure who to partner with or how to make something happen, and so the workshops that we’re offering will help facilitate all of those cultural ideas.”
Reynolds adds she has gone on to work with people she’s met at each of the conferences she’s attended. Much of the conference focuses on the role of arts and culture in growing municipal economies and community engagement. Communities like Pittsfield are an example of a western Massachusetts city that has seen some economic revitalization from investments in the arts. The conference continues Saturday.