MASON CITY, Iowa – North Iowa Area Community College (NIACC) and Mason City Arena are lighting up the night to urge Congress to help the live event industry.
Venues across the country, including the Mason City Arena and the NIACC Performing Arts & Leadership Series, will be lit in red from 9 pm to midnight Tuesday to raise awareness of the millions put out of work due to live events cancelled by the coronavirus pandemic.
NIACC says #BeAnArtsHero, a grassroots coalition of arts and cultural workers, reports that:
The Arts & Culture sector employs 5.1 million people.
Provides $877 billion value added to the U.S. economy, more than transportation, agriculture, or tourism.
The Arts & Culture sector makes up 4.5% of GDP.
NIACC says 62% of Arts Workers report that they are fully unemployed due to COVID-19 and 94% of Arts workers report income loss, with the average Arts worker reporting $23,500 in lost revenue this year.
According to the Brookings Institute economic report “Lost Art: Measuring COVID-19’s Devastating Impact on America’s Creative Economy,” they estimate a loss of 2.7 million jobs and more than $150 billion in sales of goods and services for creative industries nationwide, representing nearly a third of all jobs in those industries and 9% of annual sales. The fine and performing arts industries will be hit hardest, suffering estimated losses of almost 1.4 million jobs and $42.5 billion in sales. These estimated losses represent 50% of all jobs in those industries and more than a quarter of all lost sales nationwide.
The following locations in Rochester will also be lit red from 7 pm until midnight Tuesday:
- The Castle
- Rochester Civic Theatre
- Mayo Civic Center
- Majestic Events
- Fox & Fern Floral
The live event industry is calling on the U.S. Congress to pass the RESTART Act, which would extend the Paycheck Protection Program, establish Small Business Association loan guarantees and extend the Pandemic Unemployment Act.