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To serve as a center for education, production and entertainment in the arts, to promote life-long learning, and to provide opportunities to experience and participate in the arts.
Founded in 1974 by three independent groups (Camden Art Association, Camden Music Association, and the Camden Community Theatre), the Fine Arts Center was intended to be the cultural focus of the county and to serve as the local arts agency and an umbrella organization for affiliate clubs. At the time, 5.19 acres of land and a historic home were donated to the cause and $80,000 was raised to restore and renovate that facility to serve as the headquarters for the Fine Arts Center.
In 1982-83, a $600,000.00 capital campaign was conducted and an additional facility including a theatre, dressing rooms, a gallery and office space was constructed on the site. In 1993, a capital campaign raised the endowment of the Fine Arts Center from $500,000 to one million dollars. In 1997, funds were raised to renovate the auditorium, implement significant sound enhancements, upgrade and computerize the theatre lighting system and upgrade the computer and communications systems at the Fine Arts Center.
In 1974, when the Fine Arts Center was organized, there was a single employee. In 1983, when the new building was constructed, the staff increased to two. Today, full time staff number five, part time number two and contracted staff numbers vary during the year. Artists and teachers number 20-30 at any given time. Volunteers number in the hundreds. The Fine Arts Center enjoys a close working relationship with the Kershaw County schools in fostering arts education throughout the county.
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