Northport Public School
104 S. Wing St., Northport, MI 49670
PURCHASE TICKETS (231) 386-5001, 10am-2pm M-F
The Northport Community Arts Center is committed to bringing HOME the performing arts to Leelanau County with inspiring performances that are also affordable. Since the NCAC’s founding in 2001, we’ve created a thriving arts community in the beautiful NCAC auditorium, located in the Northport Public School. The NCAC has hosted renowned performers like the Tommy Dorsey Band led by Buddy Morrow, the Chenille Sisters and the Dave Bennett Quartet. We’ve also presented performances by local and regional talent including the Northport Community Band, The Village Voices, local theatre groups who graced the stage in a series of musicals and popular regional performers like the Cherry Capital Chorus and the Traverse Symphony Orchestra Symphony Ensemble conducted by Kevin Rhodes.
The seeds for the idea behind the Northport Community Arts Center began to germinate 1996 when a group of local residents involved in the performing arts began talking about building a theatre. Sue Hanson and Ann Bloomquist were collaborating on community theatre projects and Bloomquist was also leading The Village Voices, which also needed a place to rehearse and perform.
Two years later the school began discussing both school repairs and expanding the school building. Those talks led to discussions about making the school a community center and included meetings between the school and the arts community. Community members promised that if voters passed the school bond issue to add classrooms and a gym, they’d raise a million dollars to add a Community Arts Center Auditorium to the project and give it to the school. As is typical in Northport, the community supported both the school and the arts center fund drive. On May 19, 2000, the community broke ground for the arts center auditorium with The Village Voices providing music for the event.
Fund raising efforts were headed by Dick Hanson, then Director of the Leelanau Township Community Foundation. Key to those efforts was the establishment of a fund to support the cost of operations and maintenance. That fund was created thanks to the generosity of Paula Warm LaClaire and David Warm, Jr, who established an endowment fund. The successful fund-raising drive, coupled with the endowment fund allowed the NCAC to begin operations without debt.
The NCAC opened its doors on October 27, 2001 with a gala free concert. Welcoming guests into the lobby was a string trio of local residents Fay Starr, Lynn Spitz-Nagel and Evy Sussman. The Village Voices, conducted by Ann Bloomquist, and the Northport Community Band, conducted by Ken Bloomquist, anchored the show, which was highlighted with performances by local musicians. The full-house crowd gathered in the lobby after the performance for a gala reception.
In its first year the NCAC offered a total of 14 concerts in three series. Excitement about the NCAC opening created a high demand for tickets during the first fall series, with nearly 300 people purchasing season tickets in the 434 seat auditorium. At the end of the first year, over 5,000 seats had been filled for the 14 events.
Fast forward ahead to this year’s NCAC season. It’s a season filled with diverse performances that are sure to offer something for everyone. The NCAC is keeping to its commitment to bring HOME the performing arts and to do so affordably. Season ticket holders save even more money.
Volunteering is another great way to give to the NCAC. Volunteers are key to the NCAC mission of Bringing the Arts Home to our community. Like many community organizations, volunteers are the backbone of our organization. Without them we wouldn’t be able to build sets, sell tickets, run sound and lights, solicit donations and more. If you’d like to be part of the NCAC volunteer team, please contact the office at 231.386.5001 or contact one of the volunteer leaders listed below:
Office Activities – Lisa Drummond, 231.386.5001
Ushering – Dorothy Schobel, 231.386.5458; Becky Holton, 231.386.7207
Ticket Booth Operation – Patty Noftz, 231.386.5606
Control Booth Operation – Kent Holton, 231.386.7207
Set Construction – Sharon Hall, 231.386.7465
Northport Community Band – Don Wilcox 231.386.5764
The Village Voices – Carol Bachmeyer 231.228.6409
NCAC Board of Trustees
Janet Crane – Director of Marketing, President Elect
Becky Holton – Treasurer
Kent Holton – Director of Facilities
Joan Kalchik-Tenbrock – President
Dick Koenig – Director of Development
Doug Scripps – Past President
Joe Thatcher – Director of Programming
Kristin Thomas-Frank – school board representative
Lynelle Wilcox-Irvine – school board representative