Trenton, NJ – As part of her “Arts Mean Business” tour across the state, Lt. Governor Kim Guadagno made a stop today along the Monmouth County Arts Corridor, or MoCo, a center of arts and commerce spanning the county’s shore communities. Showcasing the area’s arts and cultural assets as significant contributors to economic activity and downtown revitalization, Lt. Governor Guadagno visited the Two River Theater in Red Bank.
“The MoCo effort capitalizes on the diverse cultural and entertainment assets the Jersey Shore region has to offer,” said Lt. Governor Guadagno. “These unique and valuable assets drive tourism, create jobs and make communities more livable in many ways.”
Business and community leaders from across the region are working together with local governments to brand the Monmouth County Arts Corridor, which includes Red Bank, Long Branch, Asbury Park, Belmar and Manasquan, as home to a string of distinctive locations with the goal of boosting the area’s profile as a year-round tourism destination. Local leaders are also eager to capitalize on the heightened interest expected in 2014 when New Jersey hosts the NFL Super Bowl, which will help kick off a year-long celebration of the state’s 350th anniversary
“There’s no question that the arts are a proven catalyst for economic revitalization,” continued Lt. Governor Guadagno. “Across the state we’ve seen examples of remarkable success, and I commend the many strategic public-private partnerships that make it possible. Today I am in Red Bank, but you could go to any of the Monmouth Corridor towns and see the difference that the arts are making.
In Red Bank, improvements to the downtown business district have been a team effort of local businesses, government and the nonprofit arts sector for years. In 2005 this partnership enabled the arrival of the Two River Theater in the heart of downtown, which was quickly became home to exceptional productions and innovative programming, and a strategic complement to the historic Count Basie Theatre just a few blocks away.
During her visit to Two River, Lt. Governor Guadagno heard plans for Red Bank’s ongoing development with the arts at the core of the plan.
“The Count Basie and Two River Theaters anchor Red Bank’s cultural district and are major economic drivers, drawing visitors from near and far who then shop, dine and stay over,” said Nancy Adams, executive director of the Red Bank River Center, which manages the downtown on a daily basis and also creates events and coordinates marketing Red Bank. “We consider these cultural venues to be invaluable assets for our downtown’s economic health – and they are also integral to shaping the vibrant, creative community life that makes Red Bank attractive to residents and businesses.”
State funds through the New Jersey State Council on the Arts support the Two River Theater, Count Basie Theater and the Monmouth County Arts Council, all among the partners leading the charge to further cultivate coastal Monmouth County as one of New Jersey’s premier cultural regions.
The New Jersey Partnership for Action (PFA) supports the vital role business plays in advancing the state's economy and creating jobs. Led by Lt. Governor Guadagno, the PFA is a three-pronged public-private approach to economic development and the starting point for all initiatives, policies, and efforts to grow New Jersey's economy and create quality, sustainable jobs in our communities. The three elements of the PFA include the Business Action Center, reporting directly to the Lt. Governor and providing the business community with a single point of contact, applying a proactive, customer-service approach to businesses' interactions with State government; the New Jersey Economic Development Authority, serving as the state's "bank for business"; and Choose New Jersey, an independently funded and operated 501(c)(3) not-for-profit corporation created to encourage and nurture economic growth throughout New Jersey.
Businesses considering a move or in need of assistance are encouraged to call New Jersey's Business Action Center at (866) 534-7789 or visit the State's Business Portal at www.newjerseybusiness.gov.