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Planners look for opportunities to enhance proposed cultural district in Butler

Dennis Casey, vice chairman at Butler Little Theatre, and Sue Burtner, representing local churches, log ideas for improvement around the Butler Little Theatre for Rotary Club of Butler PM’s Arts and Cultural District “Dream Walk” on Thursday in Butler. Joseph Ressler/Butler Eagle
Downtown dreams

Groups explored the streets of Butler Thursday evening to examine the city’s features and eccentricities with an eye for the possibilities.

The walkers were on the lookout for new opportunities downtown to create the Butler Arts and Cultural District, a project the Rotary Club of Butler PM is undertaking to enhance the city.

Butler County Commissioner Leslie Osche, who is project chairwoman for the cultural district and secretary of the Rotary Club of Butler PM, told attendees of Thursday’s “Dream Walk” to watch for subtle ways the city could make positive aesthetic changes.

“We can go out and walk and dream a little bit and look for different places where things might be,” Osche said. “Like benches, signage, art, actual sculpture, places for performances, places for demonstrations — looking at the whole area differently.”

The Rotary club started formulating the Arts and Cultural District in December, when its leaders proposed a geographic block of North Washington, West Jefferson, North McKean, Charles and North Main streets to be the site of potential exhibits and events for the arts community.

People who attended the walk teamed up in groups of about six people each to walk portions of the proposed district and to brainstorm their wants for the area. A survey included ideas such as murals, sculptures, nature in art, performance spaces, markets and film or literature spaces.

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