Nonprofit Arts and Culture Industry Generates $104.5 Million in Economic Activity and Supports More Than 2,800 Jobs in Alachua County Annually


The Parks, Recreation and Cultural Affairs Department (PRCA), as the local arts agency for Alachua County, has announced that Gainesville and Alachua County’s nonprofit arts and culture industry generates $104.5 million in annual economic activity - supporting 2,847 full-time equivalent jobs and generating $9.1 million in local and state government revenues, according to the Arts & Economic Prosperity 5 national economic impact study. PRCA served as Alachua County’s coordinator of the Arts & Economic Prosperity 5 study, the most comprehensive economic impact study of the nonprofit arts and culture industry ever conducted in the United States.

Arts & Economic Prosperity 5 was conducted by Americans for the Arts, the nation’s leading nonprofit organization for advancing the arts and arts education. Results show that nonprofit arts and culture organizations spent $36.6 million during fiscal year 2015. This spending is far-reaching: organizations pay employees, purchase supplies, contract for services and acquire assets within their community. Those dollars, in turn, generated $60.4 million in household income for local residents.

Total attendance to arts and culture events exceeded 2.4 million, which was made up of 72.2 percent residents and 27.8 percent non-residents. With average event-related spending for residents at $20.21 and non-residents at $48.24, event-related expenditures by these audiences totaled $67.9 million.

“Alachua County’s nonprofit cultural sector plays an integral role in our economic infrastructure, as this study clearly shows,” says Russell Etling, cultural affairs manager with the City of Gainesville Parks, Recreation and Cultural Affairs Department. “As we look to attract new enterprise to our community, retain the talent being educated at our superb institutions of higher learning and improve the quality of life of our citizens, we must capitalize on the value of the arts community to help accomplish these goals.”

Nationally, the Arts & Economic Prosperity 5 reveals that the nonprofit arts industry produces $166.3 billion in economic activity every year, resulting in $27.5 billion in federal, state and local tax revenues. In addition, it supports 4.6 million full-time equivalent jobs and generates $96.07 billion in household income.

In addition to spending by organizations, the nonprofit arts and culture industry leverages $67.9 million in event-related spending by its audiences. As a result of attending a cultural event, attendees often eat dinner in local restaurants, pay for parking, buy gifts and souvenirs, and pay a babysitter. What’s more, attendees from out of town often stay overnight in a local hotel. In Alachua County, these dollars support 2,847 full-time equivalent jobs and generate $9.1 million in local and state government revenues.

“The cultural community has long known its powerful impact on the infrastructure of the regions we serve, and the results of this important study provide the data to back this up,” says Leslie Ladendorf, chair of the Gainesville-Alachua County Cultural Affairs Board and museum operations director of the Cade Museum for Creativity + Invention. . “As greater Gainesville realizes its vision of becoming the ‘New American City,’ we must make sure that the arts have a seat at the table and play an integral role in this process.”

Images of Gainesville and Alachua County’s rich cultural offerings may be viewed at

A summary of the Arts & Economic Prosperity 5 findings for Alachua County are available at

The Arts & Economic Prosperity 5 study was conducted by Americans for the Arts and supported by the Ruth Lilly Fund of Americans for the Arts. Americans for the Arts’ local, regional, and statewide project partners contributed both time and financial support to the study. Financial information from organizations was collected in partnership with DataArts™, using a new online survey interface. For a full list of the communities that participated in the Arts & Economic Prosperity 5 study, visit