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Our Mission: To tell the story of John Steinbeck's rich legacy and to present, create and explore stories of the human condition.
WHAT LIES AT THE HEART OF THE STEINBECK CENTER?
Memorializing John Steinbeck
Revitalizing downtown and Main Street in Salinas
Building a living museum for Salinas Valley culture and commerce
Expanding and giving access to the country's largest collection of Steinbeck Archives
Offering special education programs and facilities for school children
Constructing a world class facility for Steinbeck scholarship
Providing the first major arts exhibition space in Salinas
Creating a dynamic community center for both daytime and evening family events
Attracting visitors from the millions of Monterey County tourists
Year round, active programs take place under the Center's roof. Through archive displays, art and history exhibitions, lectures, repertory film series, and special programs for schools, the Center draws people into explore the rich history of the Salinas Valley and Steinbeck Country.
The Steinbeck Center presents the life of Steinbeck, his writings, his characters, and Steinbeck Country in an informative, educational and entertaining manner. Different nationalities play an important role in the Steinbeck Center because the author himself saw the Mexican, Chinese, Italian, Portuguese and other ethnic groups as dignified people and important contributors to the community (East of Eden, Tortilla Flat, Forgotten Village, Cannery Row, etc.). Utilizing diorama, innovative exhibits, changing displays and other media, the wonder and beauty of Steinbeck's creativity is dramatized so that everyone can enjoy and appreciate the author, his works and his environment. This will be literature and culture come alive. You can even see the original truck, Rocinante , that John Steinbeck drove while writing Travels with Charley.
Equally as important as drawing people into the Center, the Center reaches out to the community--to inform and entertain, to invite visitors from around the world, to spill out into revitalized Main Street with a garden area, musical and theatrical performances, tours, festivals, and special events.