HM: A Revitalization of the Arts

The pandemic may have had a crushing blow on national arts organizations and non-profit councils – but the McCormick Arts Council (MACK) continues to serve. Heather McNally, Director of Programming and Development, presented a presentation entitled “Revitalizing the Arts in McCormick County” to the attendees of the Chamber of Commerce Annual Dinner.

Her presentation focused on offering a summary of the current state of the MACK, addressing the critical impact of the pandemic and efforts to continue operations while seeking emergency relief. The organization has operated from Main Street since 1985, the same year the Keturah Hotel, host site of the arts council, was designated as a Nationally Registered Historic Site. The organization has operated from Main Street for over 35 years and plans to be a vital part of the economic development and strategic plans to ensure McCormick’s community health and success.

“The MACK is – and will continue to thrive – despite the challenges we have recently faced. We are offering quality programs, have a strong vision for our organization, and are indeed serving our mission – even as the building awaits restoration efforts.”

She shared information about the historic building and the MACK Rehabilitation Project.

The MACK Rehabilitation Project goals are to:

  • Enhance ADA Accessibility to all areas of the building and site, including the addition of an elevator.

  • Update utility services and repair deficiencies to building for longevity and to bring it into code compliance.

  • Approach renovations in a historically sensitive way to honor our past.

  • Create flexible and multi-use program spaces for a variety of arts-related endeavors.

The building plan includes addressing the substantial structural and utility deficiencies which continue to impede life safety, accessibility, and code compliance. McNally shared the needs and vision of the organization and issued a call to action to join the MACK, participate in leadership, advocate for the arts and give generously to help return the organization back to full services. The building project is the primary need for the organization to return to full services. After 10+ months of dedicated planning and design efforts, the MACK does hope to proceed to take the next steps to provide a fully functioning facility for our vibrant community and programs. Phase I announcements will be delivered to all stakeholders at the earliest appropriate time.

“In order for the McCormick Arts Council to recover and return from the pandemic to offer high quality, safe, and fully accessible programming, we need to advance this project as a community.”

Key Points of her presentation include:

  • Arts are $9.7B annual industry in South Carolina and growing

  • McCormick’s Creative Vitality Index (CVI), which measures the health of the creative economy, is 0.37 but growing

  • The building project will ensure a safe and fully functional cultural center, maximizing the services and use of the facility

  • Catalyst in cultural and economic development and historic tourism for McCormick County

  • Investment in the MACK will provide access to arts that will serve generations

  • Phase I construction may begin in early 2022

  • MACK is committed to maintaining the delivery of quality programs within COVID limitations

  • Shop moved to Main Street investment in our downtown 35 Artists served

  • 2021 Shop reached peak sales and participation and $600k in sales over 10 years

Please email for additional information or call (864) 602-0331.