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  • Jessie Olson

End of Summer Reflection

At the beginning of August, we celebrated one year of Main Street Studios. For First Thursday, we gathered at 675 Main Street with resident artists, members, community partners, and friends. We looked at and appreciated the art on our walls, the banners outside our building, and the transformation of the space from a bank to an art space in the last 12 months. The best part of the evening was when we came in from our photo and settled into a circle with our cheese and crackers to enjoy some conversation. We talked about many things, about art and Fitchburg history, as well as a reflection on our different perspectives on history through the different generations that gathered in that circle, from age 19 to 88. It was quite simple, and yet one of my favorite things about Main Street Studios. Whether it is an artist hosting a party, a meeting of the stewards, a group of interns sharing excitement about the school year to come, or visitors stopping by to say hello over a cup of coffee, we offer a space for people to connect not only about art but with one another. These connections are what make Main Street Studios a community art space.

As we head into our second year of Main Street Studios, we look to honor another anniversary. In 1978, a group of local leaders came together to celebrate the theater, music, dance, and visual art that have long been a part of this region. They worked together to build a sense of common purpose and collaboration with one another and the community at large when they created the Fitchburg Cultural Alliance.

In thinking about how to celebrate this anniversary, I discovered that 45 years is associated with the sapphire. The sapphire is often considered a symbol of wisdom. As we have settled into our space at 675 Main Street, I have appreciated the wisdom that has come with learning. It has been a year to learn from what the Alliance has done in the past, to recognize our strengths as well as our weaknesses, to see where we have the opportunity to grow, and what works well right now.

What works well right now is being a place where conversation lingers, a place where we can gather with our friends and colleagues to share ideas and stories and feel part of something.

I encourage you to join us at Main Street Studios and be part of our conversation. Become a member. Be part of our 45th celebration. Share a story you have of the Alliance or the art you make.


As a small organization, we rely on the support of our community to make things happen. Give us your time, your unused art supplies, or a donation to help us with our operating costs. Every contribution matters and helps us to build a space to create, connect, and celebrate art in downtown Fitchburg. Learn how you can support us today.

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