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JCAC Funded Programs

We are happy to offer the following programming for Jackson County.

Rotunda Gallery

The Rotunda Gallery is on the first floor of the historic Jackson County Courthouse, part of the Jackson County Library Complex on Courthouse Hill. The Rotunda Gallery space is shared by the Jackson County Historical Society, Jackson County Genealogical Society and the Jackson County Arts Council. Art exhibits are coordinated through the Jackson County Arts Council. From time to time, the rotunda space is used for special exhibits, sponsored by the other two organizations. A secure, high-quality hanging system makes the space a good option for rotating art exhibits. 

To be considered, artists must be:

  • Living and working in Western North Carolina, preferably Jackson County.
  • A member in good standing of the Jackson County Arts Council.
  • Willing to donate 10% of the sale of your work to the Jackson County Arts Council.

Download an Application Forms

Application forms can be submitted via email ( or mail to the Rotunda Gallery Committee at 310 Keener Street, Room 201, Sylva, NC 28779.

Community Room Piano

A Samick SIG-61 piano was purchased by the Jackson County Arts Council for use in the Community Room, located in the Jackson County Public Library Complex.

The piano provides opportunities for performances, concerts, master classes, and many other kinds of musical presentations. The piano maintenance will be the responsibility of the Jackson County Arts Council. The piano is not available for private or group lessons or practice on an ongoing basis. Read our Piano Policy.

To apply to use the piano, please fill out the Piano Use Application.

Public Schools Art Supplies

JCAC provides supplemental funding to all art programs in Jackson County Schools. These funds are used to purchase art supplies and are apportioned by school size.


The Jackson County Junior Appalachian Musicians program is an afterschool program that provides school-aged students (3-12th grades) instruction and performance opportunities in mountain heritage music with traditional Appalachian instruments: acoustic guitar, fiddle, mandolin, banjo, autoharp, and string band. Funding for this program comes from the NC Arts Council, Jackson County Arts Council, and donations and contributions from the public. The Jackson County Arts Council is the designated county partner through the state that allows us to offer this program in our county. The program is partially funded by the North Carolina Arts Council and the Jackson County Arts Council. Funds also come from grants, registration fees, and fundraising events.

Please contact JAM at for more information. Jackson County JAM is an affiliate program of the regional Junior Appalachian Musicians, Inc., headquartered in Independence, Virginia. Learn more:

NC Arts Council & JCAC Funded Programs

The following program are funded by the North Carolina Arts Council, a division of the Department of Natural & Cultural Resources, with funding from the National Endowment of the Arts. Supplemental funding is provided by JCAC.

Grassroots Grant

Cherokee graduate getting hug

2020-2021 Grassroots Subgrant Recipients:

Blue Ridge Early College Music Department – Artist-in Residence Program, Brian Heller, Pianist
Kananesgi Art Market
Western Carolina Civic Orchestra
Western Carolina Community Chorus
Western Carolina University – Literacy Festival
Western Carolina University Counseling Program – Masterpeace: An Online Art and Wellness magazine
WCU Mountain Heritage Center – African American Art Exhibit & Artist-In-Schools Program, Ann Miller Woodford exhibit
WCU Mountain Heritage Center – Cherokee Rivercane Exhibits and Arts Demonstration, Rivercane Renaissance

2019-20 Grassroots Subgrant Recipients:

Blue Ridge Early College Music Program
Cullowhee Revitalization Committee (CURVE)
WCU Mountain Heritage Center
WCU Bardo Arts Center
Sylva Art and Design Committee
Western Carolina Civic Orchestra
Western Carolina Community Chorus
The Village Green – Pots on the Green – Cancelled due to COVID 19

cARTwheels Programs

The cARTwheels program provides high-quality stage performances and residency experiences to students across the state. cARTwheels engagements typically include:

• A teacher workshop (required, two to three hours): to help teachers create entryways for their students to the performance, and to implement program concepts into the classroom.

• Live performances: two 50-minute, high-quality, age-appropriate performances that engage students’ imaginations. These performances will be presented at local performance venues.

• Residency activities in the schools and in the community as per the selected artist’s description on the roster.

• Study guides to introduce students to the performance. Guides include activities and resources that make curricular connections and facilitate extensions in the classroom.

JCAC provides cARTwheels programming to Jackson County school students every other year.

Recent Programs


“Bailes de Ida y Vuelta” performed by Flamenco Vivo Carlota Santana Dance Company – A multicultural program to help understand and celebrate our Hispanic/Spanish community. This dance and history program provided innovative and engaging methods to teachers to explore creative ways to understand and celebrate diversities in our schools and communities as well as help our students have a greater understanding of social issues our community and world currently face.


Canceled – Applied Dance/Inspired Mathematics program by Black Box Dance Theatre – A program that offers an art form (Dance) that is not offered through our school system that incorporates a core subject in education (Math). The combination of dance and math will enlighten our students in different ways to look at both.

Other JCAC Funded Projects

JCAC regularly sponsors the following projects in Jackson County:


A middle-school art camp held for a week in the summer at Western Carolina University. The camp features applied forms such as interior design and textile design. JCAC provides scholarships to students on a needs basis.

Youth Art Month

Initiated by JCAC founder Dr. Perry Kelly, Youth Art Month has been staged at WCU (Bardo Art Center Concourse) for more than 45 years. Co-sponsored by WCU’s Art Education Club and the College of Education and Allied Professions the event features over 400 artworks from the 10 schools in Jackson County. Artists are awarded prizes and recognized at receptions.

Children’s Art Days at WCU

Held during scheduled Jackson County teacher workdays, these days are themed and feature art forms not typically offered in schools. The WCU Art Education Club has been offering these events for 10 years. JCAC provides scholarships to students on a needs basis.