The Indiana Arts Commission (IAC) Board has voted to officially designate the City of Fishers’ Nickel Plate District as a Statewide Cultural District. The designation was approved at today’s IAC Quarterly Business Meeting.
The City of Fishers applied for the designation in September, citing the recent momentum around advancing art and culture in Fishers. This fall, the City was recognized as the Emerging Arts Champion of the Year by Nickel Plate Arts. This honor is awarded annually to an individual or entity that supports local arts and artists through collaboration, promotional efforts, and creativity.
Over the last several years, new public and performance art has popped up around the Nickel Plate District, located in the heart of downtown Fishers. Public art ranging from painted electrical boxes, to banners at The Edge parking garage, to a new mural at Handel’s Homemade Ice Cream & Yogurt, infuse creativity and vibrancy into the District. Last summer, the City debuted the newly renovated Nickel Plate District Amphitheater—home to the popular summer concert series and Fishers Farmers’ Market—and hosted the inaugural Spark!Fishers festival, a community celebration honoring Fishers’ history and culture. The annual Arts Crawl event, in collaboration with the Fishers Arts Council, Nickel Plate Arts, and the Nickel Plate District Business Council, connects local businesses with artists for a unique cultural experience.
In August, Fishers City Council adopted an ordinance to create an Arts & Culture Commission to facilitate a more comprehensive and strategic approach to arts and culture in the city. The Commission will be facilitated by the Department of Planning & Zoning and will seek to engage and promote all forms of performing and visual art in Fishers in support of community and economic development efforts. The Commission will become effective in January.
“We are thrilled to receive this recognition from the Indiana Arts Commission,” said Leah McGrath, Fishers’ Deputy Mayor. “This is such an exciting moment for our community. This designation signifies not only our commitment to advancing arts and culture in Fishers, but is also recognition of the vibrancy and cultural significance of the Nickel Plate District. The Statewide Cultural District designation helps to further root the Nickel Plate District and will guide decisions with community programming, architecture, public art, and more.”