Here is the complete statement as released by Buddy Hannaford of Trenton during Friday nights' music show held at the north 65 center
We are at a crucial point in the history of GCFOA. For over two years, we have been involved in litigation concerning the proposal to construct a civic center to accommodate cultural and community events here in Trenton. There are three co-defendants in the lawsuitâ€¦The City of Trenton, North Central Missouri College, and Grundy County Friends of the Arts. One of the entities has also filed a counter-suit against the other two.
Ethically, we feel we cannot fund-raise. It has been awkward recruiting new Board members. We are finding it increasingly difficult to uphold our mission to present affordable entertainment, promote education in the realm of fine arts, and provide exposure to the arts in its many forms to residents of Grundy County and the surrounding area.
Individuals volunteering to sit on this Board have great passion to help provide entertainment and further education. There are many studies showing how music and the arts in general enhance young people's education. Friends of the Arts Board members through the years have selflessly given enormous amounts of their personal time and effort to help provide cultural events to our area and to broaden our young people's perspective and widen their horizons.
We cannot discuss the aspects of this lawsuit, but we feel strongly GCFOA is not guilty of any wrongdoing. Because of the negative aspect of this situation, GCFOA has voted to take a year hiatus.
We are truly saddened we have no other choice but to take this course of action. We feel we cannot continue business as normal with this cloud over us.
We know we have a good base of support in our community and within the entire area. You who are our relatives, friends, neighbors, business acquaintancesâ€¦you know us and how hard we have worked over the years to develop a rapport with Trenton and the entire regionâ€¦its businesses and residents. We have listened to you - our patrons - and developed the trust of our donors.
It has been a real joy serving you! We feel certain our legacy will be that we made this rural area a better place to live and work. By bringing a variety of affordable cultural events to the Green Hills region of north central Missouri for 47 years, we have contributed to a positive cultural and economic environment in our community.
Following this layoff, we will re-evaluate our position. We would like to think we will be back in full swing, but there is no guarantee of this, or that we will be back at all. We sincerely thank you for your support throughout the years and your understanding.