Our History

Back in 2005 Fort Erie Arts Council (FEAC) was formed by a small group of local artists and community members. After a few years of successful artist-run events surrounding the hallmark fundraiser, Red Ribbon Art Exhibition, the council sought a location to call home. In 2010 FEAC found such a place.

The Sanctuary Centre for the Arts is a former church that was purchased by Jason Pizzicarola. He wanted to offer the building as a space for the community to visit to enjoy such things as an art gallery, theatre performances, concerts, art classes etc. If there was ever a question about what to do this weekend, he wanted people to check out what was happening at the Sanctuary. It would be the place "to be" for local entertainment.

Once he purchased the building, he asked the FEAC to help him out with this endeavor. Being an arts organization in existence for more than 5 years, the FEAC was happy to take on this task. Having a new and bigger place to call home, the Council moved into the Sanctuary in October of 2010. At that time the arts council rented the office space and converted it into an Art Boutique. Members' were welcome to display their work for sale. Volunteers staffed the space.

The Art Boutique has since closed its doors in the Fall of 2013, but members and local artists continue to exhibit their work on the walls of the main hall space. The gallery shares the multi-purpose space as it is rented out to a wide variety of community functions including weddings, showers, theatre groups, concerts, exercise classes, and more.

The Fort Erie Arts Council hosts a number of their events and regular programming at The Sanctuary Centre for the Arts as well as its sister-business in Bridgeburg, The Bell Tower-Sanctuary.

The Fort Erie Arts Council encourages diverse artistic endeavors in the Fort Erie community to enrich the lives of its residents. We are committed to the development of a rich and sustainable environment for the arts and culture in the Municipality of Greater Fort Erie and to further develop a strong and thriving creative spirit through the arts as the heart of the community life.
The Fort Erie Arts Council's five key objectives:

  1. Art Creation and Presentation:
    to support the development of artists of all ages and abilities and arts organizations, encourage artistic excellence and provide opportunities for arts presentations in the community.

  2. Advocacy and Public Awareness:
    To act as community leaders to increase the awareness of the arts for the benefit of the community.

  3. Education:
    To promote Arts Education by expanding opportunities for the arts and to encourage diversity of arts experiences for young community members.

  4. Community Development:
    To start and facilitate programs which increase participation by all community members in arts and cultural activities.

  5. Resource Development:
    To develop revenue to operate and to develop resources for the community.