Candidate: Donald McArthur
What opportunities do you believe Windsor-Essex has to grow our art, culture and heritage sector?
Amherstburg is brimming with history and has boundless potential as an arts community, hosting studios, galleries and even a theatre group. There is the opportunity to market the region as a whole considering our rich history, waterfront views, our proximity to the border and our signature wineries and distilleries.
How do you propose to attract or retain artists and cultural workers in your community?
Amherstburg needs to promote and celebrate its artists and support our historic properties and events like Art by the River. There are tremendous synergies between art and history and both can act as tourism draws. Just imagine a downtown core with studios and galleries bookended by Fort Malden and an historic Belle Vue House transformed into a conference centre with gardens and walking paths.
What role do you see for arts and culture in the promotion of the region both as a destination for tourists and as a place of permanent residence for youth, families, and retirees?
Amherstburg has the potential to be like Niagara-on-the-Lake with our rich history, our stunning waterfront and our creative community. We have a walkable and accessible downtown that would bustle even more with the addition of a hotel. We have first-class amenities like the Libro Centre to go with our beautiful parks and a network of trails that are linked to Essex County’s wine route.
In what other ways could you use your position as an elected official to help support the arts, culture and heritage sector outside of using municipal funding?
I would attend town arts, culture and heritage events and support local artists in person and on social media. The town could consider a program that celebrates local artists by showcasing their work in public buildings and spaces.
What is your perspective on the best ways to collaborate with other levels of government to ensure sustainability and growth for the cultural sector of our community?
The town needs to apply for arts and culture grants and it especially needs to apply for grants and funding in connection with Belle Vue House. The arts matter and the town needs to support that vision.
How do you personally engage with arts, culture and heritage in Windsor-Essex?
I sing and play guitar. I assisted WIFF with promotional material this season. I attend Windsor Light Music Theatre events and have enrolled my daughter, Violet, in their youth program.