Kirksville Arts Association reflects on trying year

The Kirksville Arts Association announced the launch of its capital campaign for a new building. (Louis Finley/KTVO)

Every year, service clubs throughout Kirksville gather the Tuesday before Thanksgiving for their annual luncheon.

The Kirksville Arts Association was highlighted this year, giving the audience an update to the rebuilding process after a fire destroyed the organization’s building in downtown Kirksville last December.

"We were asked to be at the program for today, so we were here to talk about the Arts Center and what we've accomplished in the last year," said executive director of the Kirksville Arts Association Judy Neuweg.

Members discussed how the fire did not stop them from continuing the group’s objective as well as annual events.

"We weren’t out very long, just a couple of weeks,” Neuweg said.
"There were a number of fundraisers throughout probably the next six months, that different organizations had and donated money to," said Kirksville Arts Association President Linda Treasure.

On Dec. 2, one year after the fire, members are turning the page to a new chapter. At the event, they announced the launch of a capital campaign for a new building.

"We will be unveiling the design at our auction and dinner that we're having," Treasure said.

Vice President Arletta Nelson said the organization thought they would no longer be able to function the days following the fire.

"When the fire happened it was just devastating. We just thought we were through, we were done. I mean that was it," Nelson said.
"The community has really come together to help us rebuild, to help us continue our programming and just to make us feel like we're needed in this community, and that's a great feeling," Nelson said.

Treasure said the organization holds a special place within the community.

"We bring the arts to Kirksville. You don't have to be an artist to belong to our organization or to attend our events. It's for everyone," Treasure said.

There is currently no estimated time table for the opening of the new building.

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