In the News

Jake Bowles

WICHITA, Kan. - Mark Arts is now open. The Mary R. Koch Arts Center held its ribbon-cutting ceremony Saturday at its new location at 13th St N and Rock Rd in Wichita.

The $20 million facility includes large studios for sculpting, painting, cooking, and more. Mark Arts also hosts an art gallery, a performance hall, and classrooms.

U.S. Senator Jerry Moran and Congressman Ron Estes took part in the ribbon-cutting. Wichita Mayor Jeff Longwell, City Councilman Pete Meitzner, and Sedgwick County Commission Chairman Dave Unruh also spoke.

Congressman Ron Estes said the facility shows Mary Koch's vision of integrating art into the community. 

"We've had the opportunity to get through and see some of the exhibits and some of the rooms here, and it's just tremendous," Estes said.

Senator Moran said he believes Mark Arts will boost the economy in Wichita and the rest of Kansas.

"As we think about the recent developments of additional workers at Spirit, for example, our ability to attract and retain employees to Wichita and to Kansas is increased by the fact that there are more things to do," Moran said. "It's a more enjoyable city, a better place to live."

Senator Moran said what happens in Wichita affects everyone in the state, and that boosting the quality of life and access to arts will improve all of Kansas.

"This all continues the effort to make certain that Wichita remains the air capitol of the world," Moran said.

Mark Arts was originally founded in 1920 as the Wichita Art Association, later became the Wichita Center for the Arts, and is now called Mark Arts in honor of Mary R. Koch.

The new gallery at 13th and Rock is open from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Monday through Saturday, and admission is free. Scroll through the pictures above for a photo gallery of the new facility.

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