The Clarksdale Press Register



The Clarksdale Press Register
150th YEAR, NUMBER 55, JULY 10, 2015
Amy Black to
promote newest
CD in Clarksdale,
ARTS- Wainwright to release new
CD at Crawdad’s,
OPINION- Reporters necessary for
community vitality,
REBEKAH YEAROUT/The Clarksdale Press Register
ArtPlace America gave a $350,000 grant to Clarksdale Revitlization Inc. last September to form a cultural arts center, and
some renovations have been done to the building that formerly was the studio of local artist Rosalind Wilcox at 332 Delta
Ave. The Crossroads Cultural Arts Center (CCAC) is now seeking a director, although at least two board members are at
odds about how to proceed with a mural project proposed by Clarksdale Revitalization Inc. to kick off the center.
Extensive renovations need to be done to get building ready
incorporated in January.
The director position will be advertised on CRI’s
website, and each board member has the informaThe Crossroads Cultural Arts Center is seeking a tion to pass out. However, it seems a mural project
that could kick off the arts center is still being
Clarksdale Revitalization Inc. (CRI) applied for
debated among the board members, as the presithe $350,000 grant from ArtPlace America last year dent of the board, Meghan Tooke, wants to find a
and received the monies last September, and the
director first.
CCAC is now a separate entity from CRI, having
See CCAC, Page 23
The Press Register
NEWS- Locals put on community
theater play,
ness manager Kellia
Washington informed
At Tuesday night’s
the board that, per the
meeting of the Coahoma advertisement the counCounty School Board,
ty school district ran in
the first hour was dedithe paper, they will be
cated to a budget hearSee CCSD, Page 10
ing, led mostly by busiBy REBEKAH M. YEAROUT
The Press Register
2015 Coahoma County Elections
Clara Dawkins Davis: State Senator, District 11
I am Clara Dawkins
Davis, 62 years of age, a
well-qualified candidate
for District 11, State
Senator. I earnestly and
sincerely solicit your
vote, support and trust
in order to be the New
Voice for the Delta
(North Mississippi) and
believe I can have a
major beneficial impact
for our District as Your
As I have expressed, I
am a LifeLong resident
of Darling, Mississippi,
the Daughter of James
Davis, Sr. and Ocia Bell
Riley Davis, Lifelong
Farmers and
Community Supporters.
The Davis Family provided housing, food, the
South Lake Water
Development, Road
Improvements, Funding
for Better Schools and
school supplies to the
I am one of their seventeen children and live by
the Family Philosophy of
“God First, Family
Second, Education Third
and Hard Honest Work
I was reared on the
family farm in Darling,
Mississippi (the Squirrel
Lake Community) and
am a lifelong member of
The New Bethel Baptist
Church on Squirrel Lake
Road, Darling,
Mississippi. I attended
and completed studies at:
-Squirrel Lake School,
Darling, Mississippi
-Falcon Jr. High,
Falcon, Mississippi
-Quitman County High
School (Madison S.
Palmer High School)
See DAVIS, Page 7
Friday, July 10, 2015
Board members are
looking for someone
capable of “implementing and enhancing the
organization’s strategic
goals, leading fund raising initiatives, developing and administering
program activities, leadership of the day-to-day
administrative functions, and ensuring that
management and staff
are in place to meet
operational needs,”
reads the job description.
Also, the director
needs to have someone
capable of writing
grants, managing budgets and operating as a
public relations person
for the CCAC. An
undergraduate degree is
required, and the board
would like to find someone with a master’s
degree as well.
Besides hiring a director, the board is looking
at making the building
usable for displays and
programming, including putting in air-conditioning units for the hot
summer months.
The building, which
was formerly Coahoma
Community College art
director Rosalind
Wilcox’s studio, also
needed some repairs,
said board president
Meghan Tooke.
“The roof ’s been
repaired, and we’re
going to put in self-contained AC units to make
it livable during the
summer,” Tooke said.
However, other repairs
need to be made, and
Tooke said the board is
trying to decide how to
best do the renovations
so that they are sustainable.
“We really need to
develop a master plan
for the building, we
don’t want to do renovations now that won’t be
sufficient later,” she
Page 23
Continued from Page 1
said. “If we do electrical
work, we could it now,
but it couldn’t be the
electrical work we
would need later if we
need a lot of lights for
the stage, or a soundboard. We really need to
go into planning before
we make any big money
Board member Wayne
Andrews, who runs the
Powerhouse in Oxford,
said the whole project
“is a question of
“What can you achieve
with the money that’s
remaining in the grant
while still balancing
that against the need to
present programming
and having some funding to start operating?
There are a lot of operational things that have
to happen,” Andrews
said, adding he didn’t
know exactly how much
of the grant funds were
left after purchasing the
building. “The grant
isn’t going to cover
everything. It appears
that the expenses would
exceed the projected
budget, so the group is
trying to figure out how
to budget things.”
Besides figuring out
the financial side of
things, the board is still
waiting to finalize its
501(c)3 nonprofit status.
The CCAC incorporated
in January, but getting
the paperwork for a
501(c)3 nonprofit takes
more time.
Also, some projects
already suggested seem
to be hanging in the balance. CRI coordinator
Katrina Zavalney suggested a citywide mural
project, bringing in
folks with the group
Beautify Earth to work
with the CCAC and CRI
to paint a mural on the
outside of the arts center building. The proposal was to use $10,000
value, people will be
of the grant funds to
more likely to shop at
pay for the mural projlocal businesses, it
ect, which would basically kick off the cultur- increases awareness of
the different projects,
al arts center’s proorganizations and
gramming and highincreases activity
light its
impor“We’ve thought of so in those areas. I
to do a
tance to
many things, we’ve wanted
mural with CCAC
the combrainstormed to the is because we can
moon and back, but communicate the
mission of this
we want the proplace through a
said he
voiced sup- gramming to be driv- huge mural on the
port for
en by the communi- side of the building, which comes
the projout of a communiect, calling ty.”
ty engagement
it “a good
partner- Meghan Tooke, process,”
ship with
President, City attorney
CRI and
the culturCrossroads Curtis Boschert,
the registered
al center
Cultural Arts agent for the CCAC
and a good
use for the
Center Board group, couldn’t be
reached by deadfunds
line, but Zavalney said
without putting all the
other things in any kind Boschert, among others
in the community,
of financial jeopardy,”
recently started asking
Tooke said she wanted
her what was going on
to hire a director before
with the cultural arts
using any more grant
center, and that’s when
she started trying to
“The board hasn’t met
implement a mural projon that idea, it’s just
ect, starting with the
been kicked around in
arts center and moving
informal conversations,
around the city.
and my position is, we
“In June, the Press
need a director and we
Register started asking
need to put someone in
me what was going on,
place who can accelerCurtis started asking
ate the development of
me what was going on,
the center,” she said.
the CRI board started
Zavalney said the
asking me what was
Beautify Earth group, a
going on, and I said I
501(c)3 nonprofit, has a
don’t know, and I realmission “to beautify
ized CRI has some
walls through commuresponsibility in this,
nity engagement and
creating fun, safer, more for using the funds to
make sure the purpose
vibrant places to be.”
and mission of this arts
“It’s more than just
center is fulfilled. That’s
art on a wall. It’s about
when I got back
how the murals can
involved in asking
increase community
what’s going on, and
vitality, which really
goes along with our mis- saw things had moved
forward a little bit, but
sion, and they have a
not to the degree it
whole economic develshould be at this time
opment report that
period,” she said.
shows how when you
Tooke said their goal
beautify spaces, it
was to hire a director by
increases property
the end of the summer,
and, like Zavalney,
wants the community to
be involved in the
process of creating a
community arts center.
She pointed out all the
board members are
busy with full-time jobs,
and it’s taken some time
to get a job description
written and discuss how
to kick the center off.
“We’ve thought of so
many things, we’ve
brainstormed to the
moon and back, but we
want the programming
to be driven by the community, and the community’s needs, and so our
first programming will
be designed at getting
people in the door so
they can have input on
what our next steps
would be,” Tooke said.
The two groups have
been in communication
for a while about community engagement
groups to get the
Crossroads Cultural
Arts Center going, said
“The community discussions, those were
discussed early on in
the formation of this
new board for the
CCAC, so it’s not anything new, it’s literally
just revitalizing it,” she
said, adding she found
it “confusing and alarming” no implementation
plan was written along
with the business plan
originally proposed by
the CCAC board. She
added a lot of the ideas
in their business plans
“were great ideas,” and
she hopes they’ll be able
to implement them
Since the CCAC board
wants to hire a director
by the end of the summer, Zavalney said she
thinks these sorts of
organizational sessions
would be helpful for
finding a director.
“What is the process
of how these folks imagine how we’re going to
reach out to the different communities and
how they are going to be
involved? What community leaders have they
been talking to already?
A lot of this is really
important information
to create a community
arts center, and it would
help the process with
finding a new director,”
she said.
However, Andrews
said the funding is a
huge issue.
“We do have to be judicious in how we spend
the remaining amount,”
Andrews said.
Zavalney added that
Beautify Earth has said
they would do a
fundraising campaign
for the mural project,
but she suggested using
a portion of the grant
funds that are still in
the bank to kick off the
Andrews said he
agreed with holding
community listening
sessions for the mural
“I put in my vote for
support for a mural
project in Clarksdale.
Katrina’s put together a
nice proposal, has
pitched it to the board, I
cast a vote for support,”
he said, adding community sessions could
“help us develop a metric of what’s the most
important thing first.”
Representatives with
ArtPlace America didn’t respond to requests
for comments by deadline.
Rebekah Yearout is the news editor
for the Press Register and can be
reached at 662-627-2201 or at
[email protected]
southern soldiers with Confederate
flags in states that commemorate
Confederate Memorial Day. The cemeWASHINGTON (AP) — The House
teries affected are the Andersonville
has voted to ban the display of
and Vicksburg cemeteries in Georgia
Confederate flags at historic federal
and Mississippi.
cemeteries in the deep South.
"The American Civil War was
The low-profile move came Tuesday fought, in Abraham Lincoln's words,
evening after a brief debate on a meas- to 'save the last best hope of Earth,'"
ure funding the National Park Service, Huffman said in a debate in which he
which maintains 14 national cemeter- was the only speaker. "We can honor
ies, most of which contain graves of
that history without celebrating the
Civil War soldiers.
Confederate flag and all of the dreadThe proposal by Rep. Jared Huffman, ful things that it symbolizes."
D-Calif., added language to block the
The flag ban was adopted by a voice
Park Service from allowing private
vote. The Park Service funding bill is
groups to decorate the graves of
scheduled for a vote on Thursday.
The Associated Press
Pressure has mounted to ban display
of the flag on state and federal property in the wake of last month's tragic
murders at a historic black church in
Charleston, South Carolina. The
accused killer, Dylann Roof, posed
with the Confederate flag in online
photos and reportedly has told authorities that he wanted to start a race
Following the lead of GOP Gov.
Nikki Haley, the South Carolina
Senate has voted to remove the flag
from the Capitol grounds and the state
House was taking up the measure
But House leaders have deferred
action on a plan by Bennie Thompson,
a black Democrat from Mississippi, to
ban Confederate images such as that
contained in the Mississippi flag from
being displayed in the House complex.
Numerous statues of Confederate figures such as Jefferson Davis, the president of the Confederate States, are
also on display in the Capitol.

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