Arts Center of Cannon County
1424 John Bragg Hwy
Woodbury TN 37190-6173
Students Performing in "Annie"
Mission Statement
The mission of the Arts Center of Cannon County is to foster and develop an environment in our community for discovering and preserving our traditions, encouraging creative expression, providing educational experiences, and enhancing the appreciation of artistic excellence.
CEO/Executive Director Ms. Beth McCrary
Board Chair Mr. Drew Sanford
Board Chair Company Affiliation Self-Employed
History & Background
Year of Incorporation 1979
Organization's type of tax exempt status 501-C3
Financial Summary
Graph: Expense Breakdown Graph - All Years
Projected Expenses $281,030.00
Projected Annual Revenue $282,221.00 (2017)
Mission The mission of the Arts Center of Cannon County is to foster and develop an environment in our community for discovering and preserving our traditions, encouraging creative expression, providing educational experiences, and enhancing the appreciation of artistic excellence.
Background Founded in 1979 in the basement of the old high school gym, the organization has grown exponentially in the following years to an award winning regional arts center which operates out of a facility it owns. Annually - more than 100 community theater performances, 6 weeks of Summer Youth Conservatory per year, 12 nights of concerts per season, a visual arts gallery with 6 shows per year, an exhibition hall with another 5 shows per year, a craft shop representing 40+ area artists, an outdoor craft show with 75+ craft artists, and a commercial kitchen with tenants making fermented foods (kombucha and tempeh) for sale to regional restaurants.
2016 accomplishments :
1. Initiated a $1 million endowment effort. Funds to be held by CFMT.
2. Initiated energy efficiency measures. Reduced overall utilities costs by 28%.
3. Initiated and completed permanent installation of our white oak basket collection.
4. Reconfigured Board to better represent county constituencies.
5. Completed renovation of public restrooms. 
2017 goals:
1. Complete fundraising to construct a classroom addition.
2. Expand Summer Conservatory student base by securing scholarship funding
3. Expand visual arts programming: education, openings, retailing
4. Collaborate with MTSU on programming and internships.
5. Working with TVA, complete transition to LED bulbs throughout facility.
1. Developing a long range plan for infrastructure and programming. We are working on both issues.
2. Implementing our endowment campaign effectively and broadly. We have a $1 million goal. The timing of its success impacts our programming flexibility.
3. Rebuilding our volunteer base.
4. Evolving our visual arts work from a mostly retail setting to a more hands on educational experience in addition to expanding our retailing.
5. Staffing - long term staff will transition out over the next few years. To their credit replacing them with comparably motivated, enthusiastic, and dedicated people will be difficult.
Other ways to donate, support, or volunteer You may donate to The Arts Center of Cannon County by mailing a check to 1424 John Bragg Highway, Woodbury,TN 37190, or by calling 615-563-2787, or online at our website. In kind donations are always appreciated and there are many opportunities to volunteer such as acting, production crew, and box office,.
Service Categories
Primary Organization Category Arts,Culture & Humanities / Performing Arts Centers
Secondary Organization Category Arts,Culture & Humanities / Arts Services
Tertiary Organization Category Education / Elementary & Secondary Schools
Areas of Service
Areas Served
TN - Bedford
TN - Cannon
TN - Coffee
TN - Davidson
TN - Dekalb
TN - Putnam
TN - Rutherford
TN - Smith
TN - Sumner
TN - Warren
TN - Williamson
TN - Wilson
Board Chair Statement
It is often said that rural America is the foundation of everything good. Being a resident of Woodbury/Cannon County for my entire life has instilled in me a deep appreciation for this value system. Our physical location is a true blessing. We live where we know and support our neighbors. We live where the countless hours of volunteer service is not just needed to exist, it's noticed and appreciated by many.
Since its inception, my family has found the presence of The Arts Center to be a valuable asset to the communities existence. Through it's promotion of various cultural events; art exhibits, concerts, education opportunities, facilitating community gatherings, etc., The Arts Center of Cannon County has become the hub to our wheel.
Unfortunately, for too long, we have worked to simply survive day to day, at best struggling to "feed the monster". However, we have found a renewed purpose. In the past couple of years a strong focus has been placed on meeting the financial needs of running such an organization. Not just the immediate needs, but the need of retiring debt so that even more focus could be placed on continuing our efforts to provide the community with the things that make it better.
Director Neal Appelbaum has provided his skill set and leadership in meeting this challenge. But we're not through. Our future will require the funds that automatically care for the physical plant while the income from events and programs fund the operation. As board President, I understand and support this need. I feel that our full board does as well. We are a unified group that desires for The Arts Center to thrive, securing the things we have come to enjoy for the past 25 years for our children and grandchildren.
The Arts Center of Cannon County belongs to all of us. It was created with the intention to share its worth with everyone. Those who do take advantage of what The Arts Center provides are better because of it.

CEO Statement
Having served on the Board for 18 months prior to being hired first as Interim Executive Director and ultimately as Executive Director, I can't say enough about the dedication of our long term staff and the volunteer base that sustains this facility. We have 5 different business models coexisting under 1 very large roof. All staff support all functions and they do it with a smile.
We are located in a town of 2,500 within a county of just 14,000. After 10 years of the basement community Playhouse, the Board took a risk borrowing funds to build our theater. 3 expansions later we have matured into a model for rural (and not so rural) arts organizations. Our cast and directors are drawn from the surrounding counties. Some were raised in our building and have gone onto teaching theater in area high schools.  Our sets and props are loaned to schools and area theaters. Our school matinee program often provides a child's first exposure to live theater. Regional and local artists utilize our gallery and craft shop as a type of menu to whet the appetite of shoppers. Our goal is to bring attention to their work and then send the shoppers directly to the artists' studios. In 2013 the County Chamber of Commerce has moved into our facility. Also in 2013, the County built its farmers market on our grounds. In 2012 a kayak/canoe launch was built at the edge of parking lot 3 years ago.
We are a not-for-profit arts venue that has become a civic center.
Description The Playhouse Series consists of locally produced productions featuring award-winning directors, designers, and performers from here at home and across the mid-state.
Budget 180000
Category Arts, Culture & Humanities Theatrical Performances
Population Served General Public/Unspecified, ,
Description This program annually provides educational programming for over 18,000 students from a 5 county area, introducing students of all ages to what is on many occasions their first formal arts experience. In addition over 200 students per year have the opportunity to sharpen their performing skills.
Budget 90000
Category Arts, Culture & Humanities Children's Theater Programs
Population Served Children and Youth (infants - 19 years.), ,
Description The  Concert Series is a slate of concerts that run the gamut of musical spectrum and has included several Grammy Winners.
Budget 30000
Population Served , ,
Description This 2 day outdoor fair annually showcases the best of local and regional crafts. Celebrating its 28th anniversary in 2017 the Fair is expecteed to have +75 juried vendors. 
Budget 17000
Category Arts, Culture & Humanities, General/Other General Arts Presenting
Population Served Adults, Adolescents Only (13-19 years), Aging, Elderly, Senior Citizens
Description The Berger Gallery doubles as our lobby on show nights. The rest of the time it is a retail art gallery with 5 joint and solo shows per year. We exhibit work of middle-Tennessee artists and crafts people. 
Budget 15000
Population Served , ,
Description Cannon Hall is our 2600 square foot exhibition space. We program both new visual arts and historical displays in this space.
Budget 10000
Category Arts, Culture & Humanities, General/Other Curatorial Work & Exhibitions
Population Served Aging, Elderly, Senior Citizens, Adults, Adolescents Only (13-19 years)
CEO Comments
The quality of our shows, facility, and arts operations are ever-improving. Our founding audience is aging; our most difficult task is spreading the word about our work to the next generation and to the broader middle-TN community. We are rebuilding our Board to better represent our "users" on a county by county basis and to bring on Board members who can financially assist the organization. Long term financial planning is needed to fund the maintenance of our 18,000 square foot facility. We established an endowment in 2016 as a first step in addressing this issue.
Marketing is ever-present work. Some of our users are not yet computer-acquainted. Others are smart-phone users. Very few in our "audience" still "take the paper". Reaching out to this disparate group requires constant effort and rethinking. 
Board Chair
Board Chair Mr. Drew Sanford
Company Affiliation Self-Employed
Term Jan 2017 to Dec 2017
Board Members
Mr. David Campbell Com-DataVoting
Ms. Becky Coutras RetiredVoting
Mr. Darryl Deason DentistVoting
Ms. Christine Dillon Community VolunteerVoting
Mr. Burton Dye Business OwnerVoting
Ms. Erin Emlen self-employedVoting
Ms. Blanche Glimps University ProfessorVoting
Mr. Billy Kaufman Short Mountain DistilleryVoting
Ms. Melissa Ming Community VolunteerVoting
Ms. Faye Northcutt-Knox RetiredVoting
Mrs. Elise Oppman VolunteerVoting
Mr. Drew Sanford Business OwnerVoting
Ms. Mary Ellen Smith Rutherford County School SystemVoting
Mr. Gayle Tate Cannon Animal Animal ClinicVoting
Ms. Tara Thomas studentVoting
Ms. Sue Williams self-employedVoting
Ms. Donna Williams self-employedVoting
Board Demographics - Ethnicity
African American/Black 1
Asian American/Pacific Islander 0
Caucasian 16
Hispanic/Latino 0
Native American/American Indian 0
Other 0
Board Demographics - Gender
Male 6
Female 12
Unspecified 0
Board Term Lengths 3
Board Term Limits 1
Board Meeting Attendance % 70%
Does the organization have written Board Selection Criteria? No
Does the organization have a written Conflict of Interest Policy? Yes
Percentage of Board Members making Monetary Contributions 50%
Percentage of Board Members making In-Kind Contributions 100%
Does the Board include Client Representation? Yes
Number of Full Board Meetings Annually 6
Board CoChair
Board CoChair Mr. Burton Dye
Company Affiliation retired
Term Jan 2017 to Dec 2017
Standing Committees
Board Governance
Capital Campaign
Risk Management Provisions
Accident & Injury Coverage
Automobile Insurance
Commercial General Liability
CEO Comments
We rotate off roughly 1/3 of our Board each year. We have adjusted our board recruitment to better represent our constituency. We track facility users by county and are recruiting board members to correspond on a county by county basis. We have adjusted our overall board count down - with a goal of quality over quantity. 
As part of our long range planning, we are sharing detailed financials with all Board members. This had not been done historically. We are also sharing financial information with all staff members.
A few members of our Board have "Lifetime" status coupled with limited voting rights; they are transitioning out. This will provide an opportunity for the balance of our Board to have a greater voice in future planning.
We are pleased with the regional press (print and digital) recognition we are receiving. Coverage outside of Cannon County is vital to our audience growth.
Later in 2017, a permanent sculpture will be installed in downtown Woodbury with funding from the TN Arts Commission and private donors.. This will help mark Cannon County as an "art place." We hope that a large mural (80x10 feet) will also be funded in 2017; its location - on view to all who drive through Woodbury daily - will further aid in expanding the vision and mission of the Arts Center into the community.
Executive Director/CEO
Executive Director Ms. Beth McCrary
Term Start May 2017
Neal Appelbaum has a BA in economics from Oberlin College, 1990. He passed the CPA exam in 1999, but does not practice accounting. During college he ran the weekly student newspaper and clay studio. For a semester he worked in New York for internationally acclaimed sculptor, Michele Oka Doner.
His career focused on business consulting in the investment industry. He also held a TN realtor's license for 4 years. Most recently he has served 2 years as Chamber President and 2 years as Chairman of the Cannon County Industrial Board. He has marketing, facility management, and budgeting experience.
In 2007 Neal initiated a successful 5 year effort to conserve 997 acres in Cannon County forfeited during a federal drug trial. That project involved the Governor's office, US Department of Justice, various State of TN agencies, and multiple not-for-profits.  
Former CEOs
Ms. Arlyn Ende Jan 1993 - Jan 1995
Mr. Donald Fann Apr 1995 - July 2013
Full Time Staff 5
Part Time Staff 2
Volunteers 100
Contractors 2
Retention Rate 100%
Tennesseans for the Arts2017
Best Community Theater (Tennessee)Broadwayworld.com2016
Excellence in Energy LeadershipTN Dept of Environment and Conservation2011
Senior Staff
Title Assistant Director
Experience/Biography Mary Wilson came to the Arts Center in 1995 as Executive Assistant after spending over 15 years as a volunteer and member of the Board of Directors. Mary handles the day to day fiscal management of the Arts Center including bookkeeping, membership services, ticketing and working with the volunteer coordinator. For the past seven years Mary has coordinated all the activities concerning vendors and craft artists for the White Oak Craft Fair.
Title Arts Education Director
Experience/Biography Lindsey Mapes has been involved in Arts Center productions since she was in high school. After graduating MTSU with a theater degree, she performed on stage and was involved with educational programming at Cumberland County Playhouse. She is responsible for all educational programming including the Art Center’s school matinee program, which serves over 8,000 school children annually from a 5 county area, and our Summer Conservatory.
Experience/Biography Ms
CEO Comments
The strength of this organization lies in its long term staff. They have provided continuity and a deep knowledge of the organization - knowing both the artists and the audience involved personally.
New staff is being trained on systems and exposed quickly to the inner workings of our business. They also have day to day interactions with cast, artist, and customer. We are building new relationships. The upside of the anticipated retirement of our longterm employees is that everyone is on board with the outcome and is working towards a smooth transition.
Fiscal Year
Fiscal Year Start Jan 01 2017
Fiscal Year End Dec 31 2017
Projected Revenue $282,221.00
Projected Expenses $281,030.00
Endowment Spending Policy Percentage
Endowment Spending Percentage (if selected) 5%
Detailed Financials
Expense Allocation
Fiscal Year201620152014
Program Expense$438,902$296,402$336,475
Administration Expense$18,245$22,088$54,642
Fundraising Expense$4,309$4,306$4,306
Payments to Affiliates$0$0$0
Total Revenue/Total Expenses0.881.601.57
Program Expense/Total Expenses86%81%85%
Fundraising Expense/Contributed Revenue3%2%2%
Assets and Liabilities
Fiscal Year201620152014
Total Assets$1,438,907$1,499,483$1,444,621
Current Assets$209,640$139,735$81,104
Long-Term Liabilities$124,701$124,834$294,454
Current Liabilities$27,410$23,705$18,463
Total Net Assets$1,286,796$1,350,944$1,131,704
Short Term Solvency
Fiscal Year201620152014
Current Ratio: Current Assets/Current Liabilities7.655.894.39
Long Term Solvency
Fiscal Year201620152014
Long-Term Liabilities/Total Assets9%8%20%
Top Funding Sources
Fiscal Year201620152014
Top Funding Source & Dollar AmountProgram Revenue $299,964Contributions, Gifts & Grants $280,435Program Services $337,866
Second Highest Funding Source & Dollar AmountContributions, Gifts, & Grants $94,142Program Services $280,252Contributions, Gifts & Grants $258,576
Third Highest Funding Source & Dollar AmountFoundations & Corporations $30,000Membership Dues $25,770Government Grants $22,400
IRS Letter of Exemption
Capital Campaign
Is the organization currently conducting a Capital Campaign for an endowment or the purchase of a major asset? No
Campaign Purpose At the Arts Center's October 8, 2015 Board Meeting, the Silver Anniversary Capital Campaign having a goal of $500,000 was declared complete. $641,000 has been raised in cash and pledges. The goal was and is to pay down all debt and reinvest $100,000 into the facility, the majority of which is 26 years old. 70% of each dollar donated was directed toward debt reduction; 30% was allocated to renovations. The remaining mortgage liability of $125,000 will be paid off with a secured estate gift.
Capital Campaign Goal $500,000.00
Campaign Start and End Dates May 2014 to Oct 2015
Capital Campaign Raised-to-Date Amount $641,630.00 as of Nov 2015
Capital Campaign Anticipated in Next 5 Years? Yes
State Charitable Solicitations Permit
TN Charitable Solicitations Registration Yes - Expires June 2018
Organization Comments

Since 2013 we have gone from challenges to opportunities. Historically, while well known for our quality programming, the Arts Center did not prepare its balance sheet for longevity. Recognizing that we first had to get our expenses (and debt) under control in order to keep our doors open, we reached out to those that had given in the past to tell them what would be necessary to continue our mission. We also communicated that need to the broad Arts Center family.

The Silver Anniversary Capital Campaign came together quickly. With a range of donations from $250,000 to $20, we met our goal in under 2 years. In late 2015 we completed the Silver Campaign having generated funds sufficient to pay off all debt and to refresh our facility’s ageing systems and interiors.

We have also seen season ticket holder attrition over the last 10 years. Times have changed. Many people do not have time or the desire to commit to a full season of theater; our operating cash flow migrated from members prepaying to just in time sales of tickets. Marketing is a now a daily focus – how to reach an audience on an event by event basis.

In 2016 we took stock of our improving situation then initiated 2 long term projects: starting an endowment and building a classroom addition. Both efforts will serve the facility and its constituents long term creating educational and community building opportunities.

2017 will mark the year of collaborative growth. We have projects planned with various MTSU departments, we will work with the statewide TN Assoc of Dance on teacher training, public art work is planned for downtown Woodbury, fermented products from our commercial kitchen can be found in Nashville and Franklin, and the Nashville Artist Guild will display their work and market our gallery services to a wider audience.

Whether it is the solitary creation of a singular art work or the grand collaboration required to well present a full length musical with a live orchestra, the Arts Center is working to make art a daily part of life for thousands in Middle Tennessee. Financial Comments
Financials taken from the Form 990.
Schedule B removed to protect donor privacy.
Financial documents completed by John P. Young, PC.
Comment provided by Elizabeth Madsen 8/3/16
Nonprofit Arts Center of Cannon County
Address 1424 John Bragg Hwy
Woodbury, TN 37190 6173
Primary Phone (615) 563-2787
Contact Email
CEO/Executive Director Ms. Beth McCrary
Board Chair Mr. Drew Sanford
Board Chair Company Affiliation Self-Employed
Year of Incorporation 1979