On Tuesday, September 15, ACAF signed a long-term lease agreement with the First Parish Congregational Church that will allow the completion of its new arts and cultural center, Meetinghouse Arts, in downtown Freeport. The necessary renovations to the church’s sanctuary and adjacent spaces are expected to be completed by the Warren Construction Group, Inc. by the end of 2020.
Meetinghouse Arts will be home to a 200-seat performance and presentation space that will provide a venue for theatrical productions, concerts and other artistic and cultural presentations. It will also include a gallery for the visual arts. Meetinghouse Arts will be used by both local organizations and touring shows and will provide a new creative focal point for the greater Freeport area and strengthen its creative economy.
“We are very excited about this project,” says Nancy Salmon, President of ACAF’s Board of Directors. “More than ever we need the humanities and all of the visual, performing, and literary arts to bring us together, engage our minds and our hearts, soothe our souls, and support our brightest hopes for our community and our humanity. We are joining with First Parish Church, which was Freeport’s original Meeting House, to create a gathering place for artists, community members and visitors in downtown Freeport.”
The opening of Meetinghouse Arts will achieve one of the important goals identified in ACAF’s Cultural Plan for the Greater Freeport area. Plans for the renovations have been carefully developed to provide a high-quality venue that is flexible enough in its design to accommodate a wide variety of creative needs. At the same time, Meetinghouse Arts will continue to be used by the church for Sunday services and other needs.