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  • City of Eau Claire affirms confluence support

    city like


    Thank you to the City of Eau Claire for their $5 Million support!

    The City of Eau Claire has affirmed their support for the project twice and has made this a priority in their long term planning. We can’t thank them enough for their support!


    Council OKs arts center support on unanimous vote – Leader Telegram

    City votes to support Confluence non-profit – WEAU

  • BMO Harris Bank and Colleagues Pledge Support for Confluence Arts Center Arts Center Fundraising Effort Qualifies for $1 Million Anonymous Gift


    BMO Harris and some of its employees have combined to make a $115,000 contribution to the Confluence Arts Center capital campaign.  Collectively they are contributing $115,000 in the form of corporate and individual gifts, as well as corporate sponsorships.  BMO Harris’ contribution helps assure the Arts Center’s “It’s Time” community campaign will raise $500,000 by December 31, and qualify for a $1 million match from an anonymous donor.

    BMO Harris was one of the Businesses for Growth donors that had made an early commitment to the Confluence.  But when the community challenge was announced, the bank revisited its previous commitment and increased it by 50 percent.  BMO Harris’ employees also made generous personal pledges to the community campaign.

    A component of BMO Harris’ contribution is in the form of corporate sponsorships of fundraising events that support the Confluence Project. The Bank was a major sponsor of the Confluence Uncorked Event hosted by Gordy’s Markets in October. Two other major events associated with fundraising for the Confluence Arts Center, scheduled for 2016 and 2017, will be sponsored by BMO Harris.

    “BMO Harris is pleased to be an integral part of the Eau Claire community.  We regularly seek out opportunities to partner on projects that will have a major impact on the community,” said Andrea Novak, BMO Harris vice president for community affairs. “As the Confluence Project has evolved, the broad-based collaborations as well as its goals for improving the community very much align with our goals at BMO Harris. We also believe in leveraging our support through sponsorships, so we’re looking forward to helping underwrite activities that will raise more funds for the Arts Center.”

    The Confluence Arts Center fundraising has passed the $11 million mark.  $687,000 has been raised to date that qualifies for the community campaign’s $500,000 match.  The overall fundraising goal for the Confluence Arts Center is to raise at least $13.5 million.  The $500,000 for $1 million campaign will end on December 31, 2015.  But the fundraising campaign needs to raise at least $1.5 million more to match $23.5 million pledged by the state, city and county. Groundbreaking for the Arts Center is tentatively planned for late spring/early summer 2016.  Fundraising will continue in 2016, until the philanthropy goal is reached.

  • CONFLUENCE ARTS CENTER – Give in Dale Young’s honor

    dale youngA message from the family of Dale Young

    If you’ve been wondering if you should give now to the downtown Confluence Art Center project in Eau Claire – do it in honor of a long time music teacher in Eau Claire you or your kids may have had Dale Young. He likely influenced many in the community with his love of music and teaching skills. He passed with the Confluence Center on his mind–he so wanted to vote on that referendum the city held in 2014–his critical illness prevented that. His wife Loretta believes he would be very happy to know you may have helped it become reality by giving a donation in his name.

    Dale taught at several Eau Claire elementary schools, Central Junior High School, South Middle School, a short time at Northstar Middle School, and finishing his career at South Middle School and Memorial High School in 2001. And he had a part in the 1975 formation of the Chippewa Valley Symphony which one day will hopefully play in the new Center.

    Here’s how to give in Dale Young’s name:

    1. Click this link to go to the Eau Claire Community Foundation donation portal
    2. In the “Special Instructions” field enter “In Memory of Dale Young (or your desired message)”

  • Ruder Ware Law Firm Pledges Support for Confluence Arts Center

    12-11 Post Match Graphic

    The Ruder Ware law firm and its attorneys have come together to pledge a collective gift of $150,000 to the Confluence Arts Center.

    The collective gift incorporates individual commitments from several attorneys in the firm, as well as a discount in the legal services Ruder Ware has provided the Confluence Project since its inception in 2011. In recognition of the long-time service and leadership of Attorney David Anderson, an area in the Confluence Arts Center will be named in his honor.  Anderson, an Eau Claire native and 1966 graduate of the University of Wisconsin-Eau Claire, was the attorney who worked with Haymarket, LLC, during the early phases of the project. He was the firm’s Eau Claire office’s senior partner for years.

    “The Eau Claire office of Ruder Ware has been involved in the Confluence Project since its inception,” said Randi Osberg, a member of the firm’s Board of Directors. “Since we have seen every phase of this project, we felt it was only right and necessary for us to step in and provide philanthropic support as well. An added incentive was an opportunity to recognize our trusted colleague and mentor, Dave Anderson, for his leadership and dedication, not only to our firm, but to the entire Eau Claire community.”

    A few weeks ago, the Confluence Arts Center fundraising campaign received a $1 million contribution from an anonymous donor – provided the fundraising committee raises $500,000 by December 31.  Ruder Ware’s contribution puts that effort over the $400,000 mark.

    The overall fundraising goal for the Confluence Arts Center is at least $13.5 million.  Almost $11 million has been raised so far.  The $13.5 million goal has to be met in order for the arts center project to receive $23.5 million pledged by the State of Wisconsin, the City of Eau Claire, and Eau Claire County.

    Groundbreaking for the building is tentatively planned for late spring/early summer 2016.  The arts center will open in 2018.

  • Group Health Cooperative Organization and Its Executive Pledge Support for Confluence Arts Center

    group health cooperative logo


    The Confluence Arts Center fundraising campaign received a major contribution from Group Health Cooperative of Eau Claire. Group Health pledged $100,000 to support construction of the Arts Center.

    Group Health Cooperative of Eau Claire made its $100,000 commitment through the Businesses for Growth Campaign for the Confluence Arts Center. In addition, Peter Farrow, general manager and CEO of Group Health, made a personal pledge of $20,000 to the campaign.

    “As a community sponsored cooperative, Group Health is focused on providing our members with local, personal service,” said Farrow. “We are invested in the communities we serve. Part of that focus means supporting local projects that make Western Wisconsin a more attractive and healthier place to live and work. The Confluence Arts Center will transform our community for the better. Our board of directors enthusiastically support this commitment. Because I believe in leading by example, I wanted to add my personal commitment as well.”

    Group Health Cooperative of Eau Claire started as a local health plan more than 35 years ago and has grown into a nationally recognized HMO. A community-based, non-profit health plan, the Cooperative serves more than 70,000 members in Western and Central Wisconsin. Its board of directors is elected by the members within the membership.

    Group Health and Mr. Farrow’s pledges will be counted in the recently launched $500,000 “It’s Time” Community Campaign. If $500,000 in pledges and gifts are raised by December 31, the Arts Center campaign will receive an additional $1 million through an anonymous challenge gift. Almost $300,000 has been raised so far.

    The Confluence Arts Center fundraising effort has moved past the $10.7 million mark in contributions and pledges these past few weeks. The goal is to raise at least $13.5 million to match $23.5 million committed by the state, city and county governments. Groundbreaking for the arts center is planned for late spring/early summer 2016.


  • Bartingale Mechanical Pledges Support for Confluence

    Bartingale Confluence Thank YOu

    The Confluence Arts Center fundraising campaign builds momentum with the latest commitment of $10,000 from a long-time Eau Claire mechanical company.

    Bartingale Mechanical, Inc., made its commitment in response to the announcement of the community campaign to raise at least $500,000 by the end of 2015. If the campaign reaches that goal, an anonymous challenge gift of $1 million also will be received. With the Bartingale commitment, total contributions raised for the Confluence Arts Center nears $10.5 million. The campaign’s goal is $13.5 million.

    “We have been a part of this community for many years and for a very long time the downtown felt stagnant,” said Chuck Falch, president and controller of Bartingale. “With all the other projects happening, my partners and I feel we need to be a part of this exciting project.  You can feel the energy that’s building.”

    Tom and Brett Bartingale opened their company in the early 1900s when they joined forces with the Grosvold family to establish Grosvold-Bartingale Co. Heating and Plumbing. In 1913 Bartingale Company was incorporated. They were located on Graham Avenue, which was then known as River Street. Having the present company invest in the Confluence Arts Center is also a tribute to its early days.

    The Bartingale Mechanical commitment is part of the Businesses for Growth segment of the Confluence Arts Center fundraising campaign. The Eau Claire Community Foundation and University of Wisconsin-Eau Claire Foundation are each accepting pledges and gifts for the project. Details on giving are available at

    The community campaign portion of the project’s fundraising effort will run through December 31, 2015. Groundbreaking for the arts center is scheduled for late spring in 2016.

  • Million Dollar Matching Gift Calls for Community Support

    $13M-TIME-IS-NOWSeveral recently received large donations and pledges to the Confluence Arts Center fundraising campaign have pushed total giving by local families and area businesses beyond the $10 million mark. The project’s philanthropy goal is $13.5 million, including grants from National and regional philanthropic foundations..

    The fundraising committee has also announced that another million dollars has been pledged by an anonymous donor in the form of a challenge grant. The Confluence Arts Center fundraising campaign will receive the million dollars if it can raise an additional $500,000 locally by December 31. The fundraising committee will officially kick-off an “It’s Time” community campaign – intended to raise the $500,000 match — Friday, October 16, at the Uncorked Autumn Wine Tasting Gala sponsored by Gordy’s Market.

    “We are continuing to see strong momentum with philanthropy for the Confluence Arts Center,” said Tom Barland, the fundraising campaign’s co-chair. “The $15 million dollar grant from the State of Wisconsin, included in the state’s budget, and Eau Claire County’s recent re-affirmation of its $3.5 million investment in the project has convinced people that the Confluence Arts Center is going to be a reality. They are eager to help assure the capital campaign’s success.”

    “Our focus these past several months has been on Century Club gifts of at least $50,000 and contributions from businesses through the Businesses for Growth campaign,” said Jill Barland, a fundraising committee co-chair. “During this time, we’ve had many people ask us how they can help. The ‘It’s Time’ campaign provides a way for everyone who wants to see the Confluence Arts Center happen to step forward with their gifts. Contributions of any size are needed and welcome.”

    The Eau Claire Community Foundation is the main recipient of community campaign gifts. The UW-Eau Claire Foundation is also continuing to accept gifts for the Arts Center.

    For more information about the Uncorked Autumn Wine Tasting Gala click here.
    For information on how to make a gift, contact Sue Bornick at the Eau Claire Community Foundation (715-552-3801) or Kimera Way, UW-Eau Claire Foundation (715-836-5180)

    For Community for the Confluence web and social media questions contact Scott Morfitt at the Eau Claire Regional Arts Center (715-832-2787)

  • Donations from BMO Harris Bank, Peter and Randi Scobie, and Jon and Maureen Homstad

    The Confluence Arts Center fundraising campaign has exceed $10 million in contributions and pledges thanks to three timely, significant gifts: from Peter and Randi Scobie, BMO Harris, and Jon and Maureen Homstad.

    TIME-IS-NOW 300x300Peter Scobie is area chairman of RPS Scobie Group (formerly known as R.W. Scobie), and Randi is a retired real estate agent and interior designer. They have pledged $100,000 through the ‘Lead Gifts’ portion of the fundraising campaign. The Scobies have built several successful area businesses and have provided leadership and support to community organizations like the Rotary Club, United Way, Eau Claire Community Foundation, Children’s Service Society of Wisconsin, and the Regis Foundation. The Scobies said they wanted to help ensure that the community maintains a vibrant arts an entertainment sector that attracts people to Eau Claire and that creates a catalyst forthe revitalization of downtown Eau Claire.

    “We think the Confluence Arts Center is one of the most exciting and transformational projects in our community for generations. We want to help assure the success of this project so that our grandchildren and future generations of young people will be able to enjoy a great facility to serve the outstanding arts community in our region,” said Randi.

    The Scobies have strong ties to the University of Wisconsin-Eau Claire. In addition to their gift supporting the Arts Center, their contribution will be recognized as a major gift to the University Centennial campaign. “Being able to help both the community and the university with our contribution makes this even more meaningful for our family,” said Peter.

    BMO Harris has committed $50,000 to the Arts Center through its Businesses for Growth program. As part of their gift, they have provided $10,000 to help underwrite the October 16 Uncorked Autumn Wine Tasting event, sponsored by Gordy’s Market. The event supports the Confluence project’s Arts Center.

    “BMO Harris has been working with the Arts Center’s fundraising group for some time, providing a mechanism for a contribution that helps leverage more dollars for the project” said Laura Talley, Market President of BMO Harris in the Chippewa Valley. “We are particularly interested in supporting on-going operations. We are thrilled to see the Confluence project move forward. We have a great appreciation for all the groups that have come together to make this happen.”

    Jon and Maureen Homstad join the Confluence Arts Center’s Century Club with their $50,000 commitment to the project. The Homstads helped found the Eau Claire Community Foundation and have a long history of philanthropic giving and civic involvement in the community. Jon is a retired CPA and partner in the WIPFLI accounting firm; Maureen is a retired teacher. ‘We’ve spent our entire adult lives in Eau Claire. We’ve had front row seats, watching and participating in its growth,’ said Jon. “It’s important for us to continue to invest in projects that have such a wide-reaching impact on our home town’s quality-of-life. We are so pleased to be part of this major endeavor that will have such a lasting impact.”

  • Security Financial Bank pledges $50,000 to the Confluence Arts Center

    logo security financial bank


    A regional community bank has joined the growing list of donors making financial commitments to the Confluence Arts Center. Security Financial Bank, headquartered in Durand, with offices in Eau Claire, River Falls and Bloomer, has committed $50,000 to the arts center through its Businesses for Growth Campaign. With this commitment the private fundraising for the Confluence Arts Center has passed the $10 million mark in gifts and pledges.

    Jim Mayo, president and chief executive officer of Security Financial Bank, said that they have been watching the Confluence Campaign for some time, and when the state committed $15 million the timing was perfect for the Bank to step in with its pledge. He added that they have been particularly impressed with the number of supporters of the project and the increasing certainty that the Arts Center will be a reality in the next couple years.

    “As a locally owned community bank one of our primary missions is to invest in and support the communities we serve,” said Mayo. “Talent recruitment and retention is at the top of the list when it comes to business challenges. We invest in our communities — whether it’s a band shell in Durand, ball fields in Bloomer, or the Confluence Arts Center in Eau Claire — because it enhances the quality of life for the residents and creates a vibrant community. While the scope and size of these projects vary, their impact is the same – they create an energy that is crucial to keeping our workforce here, happy and engaged in their communities.”

    Security Financial Bank is a business and agriculture bank that was established in Durand in 1934. It opened its River Falls office in 2005, the Eau Claire office in 2009 and purchased the Bloomer office in 2014. Mayo said the Bank partners with various community-minded groups to complete community projects and has made a special commitment to partnering with the school districts in the communities they serve.

    Philanthropy is one part of the fundraising target for the $40 million arts center. City and county government have conditionally pledged $8.5 million for the project. The State of Wisconsin also has committed $15 million through a non-state agency grant. Later in September, a broad community campaign seeking funds for the Confluence Arts Center will kick off and run through the end of 2015.





  • County board supports Confluence Project


    Thank you to the Eau Claire County Board for reaffirming their $3.5M support for the Confluence Project!

    They have been committed partners since the inception of this project and we deeply value their support.

    Now is the time for all of us to give to build the arts center! Please visit our donation page to show your support of the Confluence Project!


    County reaffirms $3.5M in funding for Confluence Project – WEAU

    County Board OKs $3.5M for Confluence with contingencies – Leader Telegram

  • Confluence donations reach $10 million

    Thanks to your support donations to the Confluence Project have crossed the $10 million mark.

    If you haven’t made your gift yet, now is the time!

    Click here to make your donation

  • M3 Insurance Pledges $50K to Confluence Project

    WEB M3 Check presentation

    M3 Insurance has announced it is donating $50,000 to the Confluence Project’s performing arts center, slated to open in downtown Eau Claire in fall 2018.

    “M3 is committed to supporting the Eau Claire area community and excited to be part of a project that has the potential to vastly and positively affect the city for generations to come,” said Mike Victorson, president & CEO at M3 Insurance. “The new performing arts center will undoubtedly contribute to the region’s cultural, social and economic health.”

    Wisconsin-based M3 has five offices throughout the state, including one in Eau Claire.

    About M3
    M3 Insurance offers insight, advice and strategies to help clients manage risk, purchase insurance and provide employee benefits. We are committed to being experts in both the products we represent and the industries we serve. Our people advance M3’s competitive advantage in the marketplace, and our focus on community builds better places to live and work. M3 is consistently ranked a top 100 broker in America.

    Learn more about M3 Insurance.

  • Confluence Approved in State Budget


    It’s time to celebrate!

    Thanks to all your hard work, the Confluence Project has been approved in the Wisconsin State Budget!

    Look for more news to follow, but for right now, let’s enjoy this great day!

  • OakLeaf Physicians Pledge $1,000,000 to the Confluence Arts Center

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    Nearly 35 physicians affiliated with the OakLeaf Medical Network in Eau Claire have made a collective $1 million in personal pledges to the Confluence Arts Center’s fundraising campaign. To acknowledge this generosity, the lobby of the new arts center will be known as the OakLeaf Physicians Lobby. Thanks to their generosity, the total commitments for the Confluence Arts Center are closing in on $9 million.


    The Physicians’ Initiative was spearheaded by Dr. Steve Immerman, founder and general surgeon with Evergreen Surgical in Eau Claire, and his wife, Eileen. The Immermans, who had made an early $50,000 commitment to the project, worked with Dr. Jim and Holly Iwakiri and Dr. John and Helen Drawbert to extend the message about supporting the Arts Center Project. The collective initiative to join their gifts toward a common goal of naming the Art Center’s lobby was accomplished over the past five months.


    “Telling the Confluence story was easy – I’m proud of our community and excited about creating a showcase for art and culture in our city,” said Steve Immerman. “Our colleagues recognized that their personal investment, coupled with that of many others, would really make a difference with this project.”


    Many of the commitments for the Arts Center project were at the $50,000 and above level, which qualified the donors for membership in the Century Club. The goal of the Confluence campaign is to secure 100 gifts of $50,000 or more for the Arts Center. With the additional pledges from the OakLeaf physicians, the campaign now has nearly 70 donor units in the Century Club.


    “We have been deeply gratified by the generous response of the OakLeaf families,” said Eileen Immerman. “The Confluence Project has the potential for vastly improving the quality of our city center.  Its ramifications will benefit generations of Chippewa Valley residents and businesses both culturally and economically.  The OakLeaf families recognize this potential and support it.”


    In addition to the wonderful response from the individual physicians, the OakLeaf Surgical Hospital has made a Century Club commitment to the project.


    The Immermans added that there are still a number of pledges pending from the OakLeaf Network physicians, so they expect that $1 million number will grow before the campaign ends. The total philanthropy goal for the Confluence Arts Center is $13.5 million.


    Philanthropy is one part of the fundraising target for the $40 million arts center.  City and county government have conditionally pledged $8.5 million for the project. Early today, the Joint Committee on Finance approved $15 million in bonding for the Confluence Arts Center.


    For further information, contact:


    On the Overall Fundraising:
    Wallace Rogers, Campaign Coordinator
    Rogers & Associates
    (715) 225-8685

    On Donations:
    Sue Bornick
    Eau Claire Community Foundation
    (715) 552-3801


    On the Physician’s Campaign
    Dr. Steve and Eileen Immerman
    (715) 832-1218

  • Confluence Funding Headed Back Into State Budget


    The Wisconsin State Legislature’s Joint Committee on Finance today will approve a $15 million non-state agency grant for the Confluence Arts Center in downtown Eau Claire as part of the 2015-17 state budget.


    The committee’s voting agenda includes capital bonding in the state budget to construct an approximately $40 million arts center at the confluence of the Chippewa and Eau Claire rivers to serve the Eau Claire Regional Arts Council, local arts organizations and the University of Wisconsin-Eau Claire.


    On May 7, the committee voted to remove from the budget $15 million in general purpose revenue cash funding for the project.  Today’s vote restores funding through the state capital building program.


    Project funding will be included in the budget sent by the Joint Committee on Finance to the full state legislature for consideration and then to Gov. Scott Walker for approval.


    The Confluence Arts Center would replace the inadequate and obsolete State Theatre in downtown Eau Claire and Kjer Theatre on the UW-Eau Claire campus.  It also would enable the community to host musical, theatrical and other entertainment and cultural events that, to date, no venue in the region has been able to accommodate.


    Anticipated Confluence Arts Center venues and space use:

    • a 1,200-1,500-seat theater, a 400-seat flexible theater, a 200-seat performance venue
    • visual arts studios and galleries
    • scene, prop and costume shops, dressing rooms and back-of-the-house operations
    • dance studio, music instruction classrooms, rehearsal rooms


    Anticipated Arts Center funding:

    • $5 million city of Eau Claire
    • $3.5 million Eau Claire County
    • $13.5 million philanthropy ($9 million currently pledged)
    • $3 million New Market Tax Credits
    • $15 million state of Wisconsin non-state agency grant


    The Confluence Project is a unique collaborative effort between the city of Eau Claire, Eau Claire County, the Eau Claire Regional Arts Council, University of Wisconsin-Eau Claire, philanthropists and private developers to create a new arts center to support university academic programs and the thriving arts community of Eau Claire and northwest Wisconsin.


    Eau Claire City Council President Kerry Kincaid, UW-Eau Claire Chancellor James Schmidt and Eau Claire Regional Arts Council Executive Director Ben Richgruber provided the following statements about the Joint Committee on Finance vote:


    “We are grateful to the committee members for their vote to provide state funding for the Confluence Arts Center. Their vote embraces the innovative and collaborative nature of the project — and recognizes that by partnering together, the city, county, state, philanthropy and private investment can accomplish much more than the old way of going it alone. The city of Eau Claire has a long and rich tradition of collaboration, and we welcome the opportunity to partner with the state of Wisconsin on this transformative economic development project in downtown Eau Claire.”

    Kerry Kincaid, Eau Claire City Council President


    “The $15-million-dollar investment by the state of Wisconsin in the Confluence Arts Center demonstrates tremendous value for state taxpayers by providing UW-Eau Claire with significant and much needed upgrades to our performing arts facilities at a fraction of what it would cost to build a similar facility on campus.  This is truly a win-win-win for UW-Eau Claire, the greater Eau Claire community and Wisconsin taxpayers. I want to personally thank our local legislators who worked tirelessly in a bi-partisan manner to communicate the many merits of the Confluence Arts Center to their colleagues on the finance committee. It is clear from the results of today’s vote that their advocacy on behalf of our university and community was heard loud and clear in Madison.”

    James Schmidt, UW-Eau Claire Chancellor


    “Eau Claire is nationally and internationally known for the quality of our performers and artists. The vote by the committee today will enable our community to create a facility that will provide state-of-the-art space for those performers and artists. Creation of the Confluence Arts Center will have impacts that reach far beyond the arts: Studies show the arts are good business and that the cultural resources the Confluence Arts Center will provide will have rippling economic benefits throughout the community and the region, make Eau Claire a more attractive place for new business, and help existing employers attract and retain top talent.”

    Ben Richgruber, Eau Claire Regional Arts Council Executive Director


    For additional comments on the Joint Committee on Finance vote, please contact:

    • Kerry Kincaid, Eau Claire City Council president, 715-577-2360
    • James Schmidt, UW-Eau Claire chancellor, 715-836-2327
    • Ben Richgruber, Eau Claire Regional Arts Council, 608-445-0044
    • Dan Clumpner, Commonweal Development, 715-832-8707
    • Kim Way, UW-Eau Claire Foundation, 715-577-5955
    • Sue Bornick, Eau Claire Community Foundation, 715-552-3801
  • Market & Johnson Pledges $250,000 to the Confluence Arts Center

    Wordpress Press Release

    Market & Johnson will donate $250,000 to the Confluence Project’s arts center fundraising campaign.  Their announcement was made at a presentation at the building site in downtown Eau Claire at noon on Monday (March 30).  Market & Johnson, an Eau Claire-based construction company, is one of the partners in Haymarket Concepts.  The company is the construction manager for Haymarket Landing, the mixed use building under construction on the Confluence Project site.

    “Market & Johnson has been a proud and an actively engaged partner in the Confluence Project since the project’s inception,” said Jerry Shea, president of the company.  “We consider this contribution to be an investment in our community.  The performing arts center will do much toward making Eau Claire a destination place in our region.”

    “Our entire company is committed to deliver a complete project that will reinvigorate downtown Eau Claire, helping provide it with a signature facility that will make our city proud.”

    Market & Johnson was founded in 1948.  The company has been an important participant in Eau Claire’s development for more than 65 years – as a builder and a philanthropist.    .

    Philanthropy is one part of the fundraising target for the $40 million arts center.  So far, more than $7 million has been pledged or donated from local individuals, families and local businesses.  The community awaits action from the state in response to the governor’s budget request for $15 million for the arts center project.  The state’s funding will require a local match.

  • Weld, Riley, Prenn & Ricci Will Donate $50,000 To The Confluence Project

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    Weld, Riley, Prenn & Ricci will donate $50,000 to the Confluence Project’s art center fundraising campaign. With this donation they add their company to the Business for Growth campaign focusing on donations from local businesses.

    “We are proud to support this project because we believe it will enrich the lives of everyone living in and around the Chippewa Valley.” said managing partner, Christine Gimber, from Weld, Riley, Prenn & Ricci, “Eau Claire is a place we are proud to call home and we want to make it even better.”

    “We appreciate the support of Weld, Riley, Prenn & Ricci.” said Gerald and Meghan Bauer, co-Chairs of the Confluence fundraising committee, “They have been a great example of civic leadership in the Chippewa Valley, and their commitment will help the Confluence Arts Center become a reality.”

    Businesses for Growth is a Confluence Arts Center Building Fund campaign launched on Feb 5th to reach out to businesses throughout the Chippewa Valley seeking to raise $3 million towards the $13.5 million of donations needed to build the Confluence Arts Center.

  • Béla Fleck and Abigail Washburn announce gift to Confluence Project!


    When Béla Fleck and Abigail Washburn take the Eau Claire State Theatre stage on February 27th they will not only be playing to their fans, they will be supporting the future of the Eau Claire arts scene.

    The husband and wife duo have chosen to donate their net profits from merchandise sales, at the concert, to the Confluence Project. This is an amazing show of support from these seminal musicians and shows that this project is receiving national attention.

    Fleck is a fifteen-time Grammy winner with his band, Béla Fleck and the Flecktones. He has also played or been featured on hundreds of jazz, bluegrass, classical, and rock recordings in his several decades as a musician. To most music fans, Fleck is simply the best banjo player in the world.

    Washburn is also a banjo virtuoso as well. She performs and records as a soloist, as well as with the old-time bands Uncle Earl and Sparrow Quartet.

    Both widely credited for revitalizing and revolutionizing the banjo, Fleck and Washburn decided they were ready to collaborate. “We didn’t want any other instruments on there, because we’re into this idea that we’re banjo players, and that should be enough,” says Fleck. “Sometimes when you add other instruments, you take away from the ability of the banjo to show all its colors, which are actually quite beautiful.”

    “This is a great chance to see world renowned musicians and support the Confluence Project at the same time,” says Ben Richgruber of the State Theatre, “it’s great to see that they are supporting this project which is vital to the Eau Claire community.”

    Fleck and Washburn perform at 7:30 PM on February 27th. You can learn more at




    For full coverage see our In the News section to your right!


  • Art Crawl Artists Support Confluence Project

    The Confluence Project has been a uniting force in Eau Claire life.

    Now, community artists are using the Banbury Art Crawl as an opportunity to support making the Arts Center a reality. During the weekend of the Art Crawl these artists will be donating a portion of their sales to Community for the Confluence.

    The artists donating to the project range from photographers, to fiber artists, to painters and multi-media artists.

    Jo Ellen Burke, Chair of the Banbury Art Crawl, feels that the mission of the Art Crawl matches the mission of the Confluence Project perfectly.

    Burke says, “The Crawl is a rare event where so many artists come together to generously share the creativity and passion that enhances our region. A vast majority of these artists support the advancement of the arts in our community and agree that the Confluence Project epitomized the culturally rich downtown we want to support.”

    “We see the Confluence as a foundation around which a brighter cultural environment will grow in Eau Claire.” Burke continues, “The arts community here is healthy, broad, and diverse including visual, musical, theatre, and performance art. Our community recognized that the arts offer a chance to foster civic pride, improve our collective psychological well-being, and to enhance our quality of life. As Beverly Sills stated, ‘Art is the signature of civilization.’”

    The Banbury Art Crawl runs February 6-7 throughout Banbury Place. Visit for more information.

    People wishing to make a donation to the Confluence Project can visit for more information.


    Deb Zanoni
    Fiber Artist

    Molly Linton
    Fabric Artist

    Tim Brudnicki

    Bruce Warren

    Lara Cornell
    Mixed Media

    Ruth Lundblad
    Watercolor and acrylic

    Tom Gardner
    Digital Photography

    Ann Wrzosek-Manor


    Dick Milheiser

    Justin DancingHawk

    Evan Hestekin

    David Morley
    Morley Custom Golf LLC

    Cindy S. King

    Eric Holey
    Stoneware Pottery

    Megan Brown
    Artisan Bath & Body Products

    Lori Chilefone
    Mixed Media

    Sandra Churness

    Barbara Geurink

    Raymond Kaselau
    Corrugated Sculptures

    Barbara Shafer

    Francie Peardon
    Francie’s Finds & Consignment

    Sandy Wagener
    Sandy’s Studio

    Mark L. Bauer
    CrafTime Buttons

    Barry Grill

    Mark Lone
    Comic Book Art

    Lars Odeen

    Mary and Brian Dosch
    Brickyard Pottery

    Jean Young
    Rising Moon Art Studio

    Lynne Maslowski

    Patricia Mayhew Hamm


In the News

Fill-in lead: Jason Jon Anderson is confident he’s right person to step in to lead Confluence Arts Center to its destiny as centerpiece of revitalized downtown Eau Claire
Leader-Telegram -November 3, 2017

UWEC Grad Will Hit Ground Running as Confluence Arts Center Director
VolumeOne -June 29, 2017

Ashley Furniture makes $25,000 donation to Confluence Arts Center
WQOW -February 20, 2017

Ceremonial start of the Confluence Arts Center construction
Leader-Telegram – October 7, 2016

Xcel donates $250,000 to Confluence Project
Leader-Telegram – May 17, 2016

Xcel Energy announces $250,000 donation to Confluence Arts Center
WEAU – May 17, 2016

Confluence plans clear final hurdle

WEAU – Mar 22, 2016

Eau Claire City Council to vote on arts center design
Leader Telegram – Mar 22, 2016

Public meeting held for Confluence Arts Center
WEAU – Mar 22, 2016

Arts center, UW-EC plans reach City Council
Leader Telegram – Mar 19, 2016

Plan Commission approves arts center site plan
Leader Telegram – Mar 15, 2016

Confluence Project: Open bids, closed meetings
Leader Telegram – Mar 9, 2016

Transfer of Confluence property made
WEAU – Mar 8, 2016

Confluence Arts Center board hires auditing firm, construction manager
Leader Telegram – March 8, 2016

Arts center transparency touchy subject
Leader Telegram – Feb 17, 2016

This is what’s possible when we pull together
Leader Telegram – Feb 10, 2016

Stakeholders release Confluence Arts Center Plans
WEAU – Feb 9, 2016

Confluence fundraising at $11.5M

Leader Telegram – Feb 6, 2016

Confluence Project performing arts center design unveiling nears

Leader Telegram – Feb 6, 2016

Arts, cultural scene helps attract business

Leader Telegram – Jan 31, 2016

Confluence offer too good to miss

Leader Telegram – Dec 18, 2015

Students pledge $50,000 toward Confluence

Leader Telegram – Dec 18, 2015

Time winding down for Confluence fundraising campaign

WEAU – Dec 16, 2015

Eau Claire Confluence project receives big donation

WQOW – Dec 14, 2015

Confluence Arts Center campaign receives two additional pledges

WEAU – Dec 4, 2015

Council Inks Confluence Agreement

Volume One – Nov 25, 2015

Confluence Arts Center gains three new pledges

Leader Telegram – Oct 12, 2015

County reaffirms $3.5M in funding for Confluence Project

WEAU – Sep 15, 2015

County Board OKs $3.5M for Confluence with contingencies 

Leader Telegram – Sep 15, 2015

Local county commission approves resolution to pledge $3.5M to arts portion of Confluence Project

WQOW – Aug 11, 2015

New Eau Claire TIF district eyed to fund downtown upgrades

Leader Telegram – Aug 1, 2015

Arts center fundraising needs final push

Leader Telegram – July 19, 2015

Confluence funding moves forward

WEAU – Jul 13, 2015

Behind-the-scenes lobbying saved state funding for Eau Claire performing arts center

Leader Telegram – May 29, 2015

Rep. Bernier & Sen. Moulton discuss funding for Confluence

WEAU – May 29, 2015

If funding secured for project, developer hopes arts center can be completed by end of 2016

Leader Telegram – May 29, 2015

State funding restored for Confluence Project

Milwaukee Business News – May 28, 2015

Joint Finance about-face great news

Leader Telegram – May 27, 2015

Mason Trust Pledges $100k to Confluence Performing Arts Center

Volume One – Apr 13, 2015

Big Orange Crane

Volume One – Apr 1, 2015

Construction Company Pledges $250K Toward Eau Claire Arts Center

WPR – Mar 30, 2015

Eau Claire city leaders ask legislators to back Confluence Project

Leader Telegram – Mar 23, 2015

TIF used as intended in downtown

Leader Telegram – Mar 16, 2015

Candidates differ over $5 million city pledge to Confluence Project

Leader Telegram – Mar 12, 2015

Commonweal Pledges $100K to Confluence Arts Center

Volume One – Mar 10, 2015

Confluence Project 50 for 50 campaign met, expanded, renamed

WQOW – Mar 10, 2015

A tale of two cities, with one difference

Leader Telegram – Feb 15, 2015

Nationally known musicians to donate to Confluence

Leader Telegram – Feb 12, 2015

Art crawl raises money for Confluence Project

WEAU – Feb 7, 2015

It’s third and goal for arts center effort

Leader Telegram – Feb 2, 2015

Bipartisan regional support seen for Confluence in Legislature

Leader Telegram – Jan 31, 2015

Consultant: Arts center would increase development, jobs

Leader Telegram – Jan 28, 2015

UWEC Professor explains the economic impact of Confluence Project

WEAU – Jan 29, 2015

UPDATE: Walker’s budget will include $15M for Confluence

Volume One – Jan 28, 2015

Walker’s $15M pledge for Confluence cheers supporters

Leader Telegram – Jan 28, 2015

Gov. Walker announces matching funds for Confluence Project

WQOW – Jan 28, 2015

Confluence arts center fundraising nears halfway mark

Leader Telegram – Jan 15, 2015

Confluence Project claimed the No. 1 spot on the Leader-Telegram’s list of top local stories for the second year running

Leader Telegram – Dec 29, 2014

Gov. Walker wants to make sure plan for Confluence Project ensures success

WEAU – Dec 17, 2014

Construction underway at Confluence Project’s ‘Haymarket Landing’

WQOW – Dec 16, 2014

Panel favors pedestrian bridge over Eau Claire River

Leader Telegram – Dec 11, 2014

Put your money where your heart is

Volume One – Dec 11, 2014

Turning a New Page

Volume One – Nov 27, 2014

Art Center Design

Leader Telegram – Nov 25, 2014

Court deadlines set in suit related to Confluence Project

Leader Telegram – Nov 19, 2014

Haymarket Landing a huge step forward

Leader Telegram – Nov 16, 2014

Northwestern Bank pledges $100,000 to Confluence Project

Chippewa Valley Business Report – Oct 22, 2014

Confluence Project development agreement released

WQOW – Oct 10, 2014

Commission approves Confluence Project’s mixed-use building

Leader Telegram – Sep 24, 2014

Leaders named for Confluence Campaign

Leader Telegram – Sep 22, 2014

Confluence project fundraising effort organized and underway

WEAU – Sep 22, 2014

More buildings dismantled to make way for Confluence Project

WEAU – Sep 19, 2014

City Votes to Support Confluence Non-Profit

WEAU – Sep 9, 2014

Downtown demolition draws spectators to sidewalks

WQOW – Aug 26, 2014

UW System regents verbally back Confluence Project

Leader Telegram – Aug 21, 2014

City leaders react to Confluence Project funding changes

WEAU – Aug 20, 2014

Regents consider new way for Confluence funding

Chippewa Herald – Aug 18, 2014

Hotel renovations would aid Confluence funding

Leader Telegram – Aug 17, 2014

Confluence Project alive due to public-private partnership

Chippewa Valley Business Report – Jul 28, 2014

Confluence fundraising effort begins

WEAU – Jul 25, 2014

The Confluence: It’s still up to you

Volume One – Jul 23, 2014

Governor Walker speaks in support of the Confluence Project

Volume One – Jun 23, 2014

Inside the ‘Black Box’

Volume One – May 15, 2014

Taking next steps as Confluence Project moves forward

Leader Telegram – May 7, 2014

Area lawmakers need to push Confluence

Leader Telegram – April 10, 2014

The Confluence Project Wins Big

Volume One – April 2, 2014

Referendum results final, Confluence Project finish line still a ways off

WQOW TV-18 – April 2, 2014

WPR Covers Confluence Project

Wisconsin Public Radio – March 31, 2014

Donors pledge $675K to Confluence, put total over $5M

Volume One – March 27, 2014

Long-term View Needed in Arts Center Decision

Leader Telegram – February 2, 2014

Confluence Referendum Wording Concerns UW-EC students

Leader Telegram – January 31, 2014

Local Meeting with State Arts Board Leaders Addresses Strategies for Thriving

Leader Telegram – January 28, 2014

Confluence Project Developer Reacts to County-Wide Referendum

WQOW TV-18 – January 22, 2014

County Board OKs Confluence Funding, but Only if Referendum is Held

Leader Telegram – January 21, 2014

New Group Supporting the Confluence Project Targets Young Entrepreneurs

WQOW TV-18 – January 16, 2014

Confluence Referendum Petition Verified; Council Action Possible This Month

Leader Telegram – January 10, 2014

Chamber President Urges Members to support Project

Leader Telegram – January 9, 2014

Walker Should Like The Confluence Project

Leader Telegram – June 23, 2013

Will This Venue Work?
Volume One Magazine – May 22, 2013

Zach Halmstad announces $500,000 gift from JAMF Software

JAMF Software – May 20, 2013

JAMF Software Pledges $500,000 to Confluence Project

Volume One Magazine – Mar. 13, 2013

UWEC Student Senate gives $50,000 and their support [PDF]

UW-Eau Claire Student Senate – Nov. 19, 2012

UW Regents approve concept [PDF]

Capital Planning & Budget Committee – Oct. 4, 2012

RCU gives $1,000,000 to Confluence Project

Leader Telegram – Sep. 19, 2012

Stars Align For Confluence Project

Leader Telegram – May 23, 2012

Businesses React To Place For Downtown Dormitory And Arts Center

Leader Telegram – May 16, 2012

$85 Million “Confluence Project” coming downtown

Volume One Magazine – May 15, 2012