Custer Area Arts Council FAQ

All policies are made with the council’s mission as the prime directive.

What does the Custer Area Arts Council do? Which areas are included in the Custer Area, and which arts does the council support?

The Custer Area Arts Council’s purpose is to encourage, support, promote, and coordinate cultural activities in Custer County, South Dakota, and in neighboring communities, as may be found feasible. Supported arts include, but are not limited to, dance, jewelry, music, sculpture, theater, and visual arts.

What are the council’s main programs?

Artists in Schools and Communities and Touring Artists (in partnership with the South Dakota Arts Council), Bark Beetle Blues, the Black Hills Ukulele Orchestra, Custer Characters (Community Theater), the Custer Coffeehouse Concert Series, and Summer Music.

Does the council partner with other organizations?

The council partners with local schools, other arts councils, the city of Custer, the 1881 Courthouse Museum, and the Custer County Courthouse Art Gallery to promote art.

Is the Arts Council a nonprofit organization? Do you accept donations?

The council is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization, EIN 46-042-8974. Donations may be tax-deductible and can be made online or sent to P.O. Box 310, Custer SD 57730.

How do I become a member?

Join through the website, or download and fill out a paper application.

How long is my membership good for?

Membership is currently valid for one year from the month that dues are paid.

What benefits do I get as an artist member?

Artist members receive benefits according to their membership level: $15 members may opt in to an artist directory on our website, $30 members add links, upon request, to their work on our website; $60 members add the benefit, upon request, of being featured artists on our website or on our YouTube channel and can sign up for a free marketing workshop; $125 members add the benefit, upon request, of having a dedicated page on our website; $300 members add acknowledgement in all Custer Area Arts Council event programs and on the website. For additional membership benefits, please see our website, www.custerareaarts.com.

What committees can I serve on?

Bylaws, Communications, Finance, Fundraising, Grants, Membership, Nominating, Program. Ask any board member for a list of committee duties.

When are board meetings held?

Board meetings are held from 11 to 1 on the third Monday of each month at Dacotah Bank (35 South Sixth Street) in Custer (see the bylaws online for more information about the board). Board meetings are open to the public, and any member wanting to bring up a new project idea for consideration by the board may ask for the item to be put on the agenda.

How are meetings conducted?

Meetings are presided over by the president and conducted according to a simplified Roberts Rules of Order.

How do I apply for a grant from the Arts Council?

All grant seekers need to submit a letter of inquiry. See our grant guidelines document, available from any board member.

How are financial decisions made?

The board makes all financial decisions. Committees may make financial decisions within their allotted budgets.

How do I get reimbursed for approved expenditures I make on behalf of the council?

Submit an invoice to the treasurer, who will forward it (after approval) to the bookkeeper to cut a check.

How are special events approved?

Event ideas can be brought to the monthly board meeting for consideration and approval.

How can I publicize my event?

Send us a message from our website, to be listed on our calendar or Facebook page. For press releases or newspaper articles, send us a message by e-mail for our Communications team at least two weeks ahead of your event.

How are board members selected?

The nominating committee suggests potential members to the current board. See our bylaws online for more information on the nine-member board. Current board members are listed in the About Us tab on the website.

What does the board do?

The board sets policy and the budget, approves grant requests, and evaluates itself annually. It operates the council within approved committees, provides support for regional artists, and seeks resources to support the council’s mission. It implements ideas that come from the general membership.

Does the Arts Council have a newsletter or a website?

Yes, the website address is www.custerareaarts.com, our Facebook page is Custer Area Arts, our Twitter handle is @CusterAreaArts, and our YouTube channel is Custer Area Arts (so named because they are for the whole community, not just for council members). All council members are e-mailed notifications of events.

How do I contact the Arts Council?

Send a message from our website, e-mail us, post a message on our Facebook page, or snail mail us at P.O. Box 310, Custer SD 57730.

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