the Blind Willie McTell Blues Festival

The Activities Council of Thomson (ACT)

The Activities Council of Thomson (ACT), a non-profit organization founded in 1974, seeks to foster education, appreciation and promotion of American arts, particularly those that draw from Southern history, culture and the American experience.

Our fundraising efforts focus on arts education, in addition to promoting the Blues and contemporary musicians through our main annual fundraiser, the Blind Willie McTell Blues Festival. (The Festival’s mission became part of ours in 1999.)

While many doors remain closed for young people interested in pursuing artistic careers, ACT’s many outreach efforts offer a fertile foundation upon which to cultivate an art rich community. Our Blues in the School programs and scholarship proposals provide educational opportunities for students and enthusiasts of the arts that are not readily available in conventional schools and universities.

We focus on education, because the arts are often neglected in most rural communities and second tier cities throughout the South. While general art appreciation and music may be part of some public school curriculums, the significance of indigenous American art typically receives little more than a footnote. And, although the Blues maintains a dedicated following and place in the history of American music textbooks, it is sometimes learned, but rarely taught in the manner in which it deserves.

Each year, ACT identifies a realistic number of projects that promote its mission. Some of these projects have included the:

  • Creation of the Thomson Depot project, providing space for local artists and craftsmen.
  • Depot Arts Festival, which provided the funding for McDuffie County School system’s cultural program.
  • Renovation of the Gas Light Theatre in downtown Thomson.
  • Funding of the Thomson Players.
  • Funding of workshops with the Augusta Symphony and Augusta Opera.

We depend on contributions from individuals, corporations and charitable foundations.

Won’t you please contribute today? Your contribution is tax deductible and will help promote the many art forms that define central Georgia’s heritage. If there’s one close to your heart or that’s part of your soul, we’d like to hear about it.

Send your contribution to:

Activities Council of Thomson
PO Box 674
Thomson, GA 30824

For more information, call 706.597.1000 or e-mail Elizabeth Vance.