Following a unanimous vote by the ArtsWA Board of Commissioners on April 13, Moses Lake is now Washington’s newest Certified Creative District. It becomes the twelfth city statewide to earn this coveted designation, which spotlights and supports Washington’s hubs of innovation and creativity.
Nestled in the heart of Grant County, the city of Moses Lake is home to more than 25,000 residents. The new Creative District will sit close to the lake.
"I'm excited about Moses Lake's Creative District certification, as this designation signals an invitation to new creative energy and economy in our district,” said City of Moses Lake Parks, Recreation & Cultural Services Advisory Board member Jamie Nixon-Garcia. “From pop-up creative projects to community celebrations and live performances, the district will enhance opportunities for creative entrepreneurs and will highlight diverse elements of area culture and history.
“As the project evolves, I hope to see the people of our community connect through art and culture and in doing so, entertain visitors and attract tourists to our unique place," added Nixon-Garcia.
“Moses Lake has a dynamic artistic community that draws inspiration from the unique place that is Eastern Washington,” said Charlene Rios, who serves on the Advisory Board with Nixon-Garcia. “The creative district designation promises to embrace those artists and their work as a vital aspect of our community.”
Moses Lake joins a diverse roster of Washington cities that includes Seattle’s bustling Rainier Valley neighborhood and the growing eastside town of Chewelah. The Creative Districts program received the Innovation in Economic Development Award from the Washington Economic Development Association (WEDA) in 2019.
“We are pleased to have Moses Lake as the newest Creative District,” said Annette Roth, who managed the Creative Districts program. “The community has so much to offer – it’s a multicultural recreation destination with an historic and vibrant downtown. Their Creative District is a perfect addition to this mix, and gives local residents and visitors more opportunities to experience the unique culture in Moses Lake.”
ArtsWA sees Creative Districts as integral to the larger creative economy, which includes professions as far-ranging as software developers and tattoo artists. Together, these industries are one of the state’s most powerful economic engines - the U.S. Bureau of Economic Analysis found that the creative sector generated over ten percent of Washington’s GDP in 2020.
“The creative economy is one of Washington’s largest economic sectors, and it continues to grow each year,” said Roth. “The Creative Districts program helps ensure that all regions of Washington State can participate in this sector and have access to the culture and prosperity it brings.”