Welcome to the
Willmar Area Arts Council

In 1997, a group of citizens responded to an incentive from a COM-PAS and Blandin Foundation partnership to build stronger support and appreciation for creative arts in the Willmar area. Along with financial support from the Minnesota Rural Arts Initiative (RAI), the City of Willmar, Willmar Public Schools, a development grant from the Southwest Minnesota Arts Council (SMAC), and membership fees, the Willmar Area Arts Council officially came into existence in the fall of 1997 and became a 501(c)(3) tax-exempt entity in 1998.

Since its inception, the Willmar Area Arts Council has been a visible advocate for the arts in West Central Minnesota. Besides providing the rotating exhibits in the Willmar Education and Arts Center, administering the Arts in the Schools project for the Willmar Public Schools and hosting themed, invitational exhibits in the Barn Theatre’s mezzanine gallery that run in conjunction with the current production, it is the force behind the popular Studio Hop.

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Upcoming Events

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Past Events

October 2022

The Odd Couple

October 2 @ 2:00 pm
|Recurring Event (See all)

An event every week that begins at 2:00pm on Sunday, repeating until October 2, 2022

The Barn Theatre, 321 4th St SW
Willmar, MN 56201 United States
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The Barn Theatre presents Neil Simon's "The Odd Couple."  Adult tickets are $20, 18 and under $10.  Tickets may be purchased by calling 320 235-9500 or online at www.thebarntheatre.com.  Tickets may also be purchased at the box office Wed - Fri, 10:00 - 4:00.

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November 2022


November 19 @ 2:00 pm

A day of fun in downtown Willmar!  Come join the fun.  The day ends with a parade at 6:30pm.

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Council Happenings

Paintings by Dona Larkin

Dona Larkin’s paintings are on display in the gallery at WEAC.  Please take the time to stop by and see her beautiful work!

Small Works Silent Auction

We’re hosting the Small Works Silent Auction again this year here at the Barn Theatre.  It will be up during the Barn’s production of “Miracle on 34th Street” in December.  Small Works Silent Auction involves artwork smaller than 12 X 12 X 12″.  Artists may submit up to three pieces of art with a minimum bid of $30 on each piece.   Proceeds are returned to the artist.  The art will be hung on Monday, November 28 and be up until December 11.  The auction will close after the final matinee performance of the Barn’s production of “Miracle on 34th St.”
If you would like more information, please contact the Arts Council at willmararts@gmail.com.


We’re pleased to announce that a fifth bench has been completed.  The bench is in front of the Willmar Public Library.  Besides this latest one, there are four others – one in front of the Barn Theatre, one in front of Rositta’s, one in front of Midtown Market and the fourth in front of the Health and Human Services Building.  Unfortunately, we are no longer able to get the benches made so we have decided to put the completed tiles on the concrete slab the City poured for us in front of the library.  We’re not sure if that will happen yet this year or have to wait until next year.  We’ll keep you posted here.






Interested in helping?

Now that things are beginning to open up again, our Board of Directors is back to meeting in person.  We are in need of some new Board members.  Are YOU one of the people we’re looking for?  We usually meet the second Tuesday of the month at 10:00 am at the Barn Theatre.  We know that time might not work for everyone, but we are amenable to changing the time if need be.

Please call or email me if you have questions about this opportunity.  Hope to hear from you!

Janet Olney ~ Executive Director
320 905-0520 or willmararts@gmail.com


Donate while shopping!

Did you know that while you’re shopping at Amazon you can make a donation to the Arts Council?   Simply shop at www.smile.amazon.com, find the Willmar Area Arts Council in the list of organizations, and they’ll give a percentage of your purchase to us.  It’s simple, it’s quick, and we’ll be very appreciative!