List of arts and culture resources in Racine, Wisconsin

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This page is a compilation of arts and culture resources available in Racine, Wisconsin, United States.

Art museums[edit]

  • Racine Art Museum is dedicated to the exhibition, education, collection and preservation of contemporary visual arts, with a focus on artists who create meaningful statements in craft media.
  • RAM's Wustum Museum of Fine Arts displays works in fine art and craft media that are organized around specific themes. RAM also offers arts education through Wustum Museum, where it has community outreach programs, studio art classes and workshops taught by regionally and nationally known artists working in craft media.[1][2]
  • SC Johnson Gallery: At Home with Frank Lloyd Wright displays a rotating selection of Frank Lloyd Wright's designs and artifacts, and explores the architect's influence on families and the American home.[3]

Cultural institutions[edit]

  • Racine Public Library enhances its community's quality of life by providing information, ideas, and creative works.[4][5][6]
  • Racine Heritage Museum is dedicated to preserving the material culture and telling the special stories of the people of Racine County; their achievements, diversity, inventive genius, productivity, craftsmanship and entrepreneurial spirit.[7][8]
  • Preservation Racine is a nonprofit organization established in 1973 to identify and actively encourage the preservation of buildings, sites, and districts in the Racine, Wisconsin area which have historical, architectural, and cultural value. The organization holds an annual tour of historic buildings to raise awareness and money for its mission.[9]
  • Racine Zoological Gardens: The zoo's mission is to foster an enlightening and affordable wildlife experience that improves the bond between people and nature. The zoo has approximately 100 different species of animals from Wisconsin and around the world.[10]

Theater companies[edit]

  • Racine Theatre Guild: RTG is a community theater that provides a variety of live entertainment and educational opportunities for all ages. RTG annually offers a season of eight main-stage plays and musicals, Racine Children's Theatre, Jean's Jazz Series and Comedy Tonight[11][12]
  • Over Our Head Players/6th Street Theatre: The Over Our Head Players have been producing live theater in Downtown Racine since 1992. OOHP is committed to providing audiences with high quality, fresh and unique theater experiences.[13]
  • Penguin Players is one of a few cabaret style performance groups in Wisconsin.[14]

Performance groups (poetry and music)[edit]

  • BONK! Performance Series: A monthly event, curated by poet Nick Demske,[15] that aims to bring challenging poetry, art, and performance to the local arts community.[16]
  • Family Power Music/Grassroots Wednesdays Open Mic and Artist Showcase: Grassroots Wednesdays is an open mic and artist showcase provided to the community on behalf of Family Power Music for use as a platform to express oneself through the art of entertainment.[17]

Visual arts organizations[edit]

  • Racine Arts Council encourages, supports and advocates on behalf of emerging and established artists, artistic groups in our community and young people interested in the arts.[18][19]
  • Spectrum School of the Arts & Gallery offers art classes and exhibits the work of member artists.[20][21]
  • Racine Art Guild promotes creative art for the mutual benefit of members and to advance the appreciation of art in Racine.[22]
  • Racine Camera Club helps local photographers improve the quality of their images and learn new techniques, along with holding photographic exhibits and contests.[23]
  • Lighthouse Quilters Guild promotes the art of quilt making and related textile areas, provides educational opportunities and encourages the sharing of members' talents and fellowship and the sharing of the quilting arts with the community, along with seeking to preserve our quilting heritage.[24]


  • Art Metals Studio is a store and gallery in downtown Racine featuring custom designed jewelry.[25][26]
  • Artist's Gallery is a cooperative of 40 regional artists located in downtown Racine.[27]
  • ArtSpace is a downtown gallery run by the Racine Arts Council that exhibits local emerging and mid-career artists.[28]
  • Funky Hannah's is a full service bead store in downtown Racine that exhibits contemporary art by local artists.
  • Gallery on 16th: A contemporary art gallery in the Racine Business Center that exhibits the work of area artists.[29]
  • Little Glass Bird Artful Objects carries work by artists in a variety of media at their downtown gallery.[30]
  • Northern Lights Gallery in downtown Racine features fine art, photography, limited edition prints, ceramics, blown glass, sculpture and jewelry.[31]
  • Photographic Design Gallery displays photographs by the owners, along with shows by visiting artists in various media.[32]
  • Twice Baked Pottery is a downtown pottery studio and gallery that shows pottery by Scott Obernberger and other Wisconsin artists.[33][34]

Music organizations[edit]

  • The Belle City Brassworks performs concerts in Racine and Kenosha that showcase guest artists.[35][36]
  • The Belle Ensemble, a professional vocal chamber music ensemble, was founded in 2015 with funding from a Racine Arts Council ArtSeed grant. Their repertoire covers a diversity of European and American choral works, performed for audiences at Racine and Kenosha venues.[37][38][39]
  • Choral Arts Society of Southeastern Wisconsin is an auditioned community chorus of between 60 and 70 singers who perform master choral works and present musical outreach programs. The CAS's repertoire includes major classical choral works, operettas, show tunes, gospel, and original works by contemporary composers.[40]
  • Kilties Drum and Bugle Corps are an all-age co-ed drum and bugle corps that focuses on education and mentorship. The Kilties perform each year throughout the country in drum corps shows, parades, concerts and exhibitions.[41][42]
  • Racine Concert Band has been offering free public concerts for over 90 consecutive seasons.[43] Mark Eichner, the band's director, says "We're committed to the great American tradition of family-friendly outdoor concerts in the style of the famous Sousa band."[44][45]
  • Racine Sweet Adelines Chorus is an organization of female singers who perform barbershop harmony in concerts throughout Racine and southeastern Wisconsin. The chorus is a chapter of Sweet Adelines International.[46]
  • Racine Symphony Orchestra performs five to six concerts per year, three pops concerts, two to three Masterworks concerts, and an annual concert for fifth graders.[47]
  • The Dairy Statesmen is a men's a capella show chorus that performs a variety of music, from standards to barbershop music, in the Racine area.[48][49]

Concert series[edit]

  • Animal Crackers Concert Series presents four summer concerts featuring national and international recording artists performing in a wide variety of jazz genres, from traditional to hybrid forms. The concerts are held at the Racine Zoo.[50]
  • Blank-Fest Wisconsin is an offshoot of Blank-Fest New York, which was created to help the city's homeless population. Musicians donate their time to perform, and audience members bring a blanket in lieu of a ticket. Blankets are then distributed to the area's homeless.
  • Dan Jam Music Festival was started in 2009 to honor the memory of Daniel Conner, who died in a car accident at a young age. The music festival features a range of music, from rock to jazz to hip hop, as well as spoken word performers. Proceeds from the concert benefit area social service organizations.
  • Jean's Jazz Series: Presents a range of jazz styles through four events each year in a small performance space with good acoustics.[51][52]
  • Music on the Monument is downtown Racine's summer concert series. Weekly concerts by local bands playing a range of music take place from June through August at downtown's centrally located Monument Square.
  • Music and More Concert Series: Concerts are held at noon on Thursdays during the summer at First Presbyterian Church in downtown Racine. Local and regional performers are invited to share their talents. Donations collected through a free will offering are then given to area non-profits.
  • Olympia Brown Second Saturday Coffeehouse and Live in Concert Series: The concert series showcases local and regional performers from September through June. "Coffeehouse" is an evening of individual acts provided free of charge.
  • Thoughts for Food is a yearly multi-venue concert that benefits the Racine County Food Bank. Local, regional and national acts donate their time and talents to perform at area bars and other performance venues in and near downtown.
  • Tribute to Bix Beiderbecke Jazz Festival is an annual, four-day event that honors the memory of 1920's era jazz cornetist, Bix Biederbecke. In addition to live jazz performances, the festival offers lectures, record and book sales, midnight jam sessions, dancing and jazz film screenings.


  • The Studio of Classical Dance Arts is a professional ballet school. The studio's purpose is to provide professional ballet instruction and performing opportunities for students throughout southeastern Wisconsin and northern Illinois.
  • Academy of Dance offers classes in ballet, pointe, tap and jazz to children, teens and adults in their downtown Racine studio.
  • Guy Singer Dance Studio provides lessons in ballet, tap, jazz, ballroom and Latin dance for ages 3 and up. The studio also hosts Zumba fitness classes.
  • Metamorphosis Arts is a dance studio in downtown Racine that teaches classes and workshops in pole fitness and dance, aerial silks and lyra, belly dancing, burlesque, yoga and circus fitness.
  • Masters of Movement Arts: The dance studio has ballet, tap, jazz, creative movement and hip-hop classes for children and teens.

Special events[edit]

  • Get Behind the Arts Studio Tour is an annual, two-day self-guided studio tour of visual and performing artists’ work spaces in Racine and Kenosha. A preview party is held the evening before the tour with a one night only art exhibition, musical performances and art demonstrations.[53][54]
  • 16th Street Studios Annual Open House is held the first Saturday in December, when over 40 visual artists invite the public to tour their work spaces in the Racine Business Center.[55]
  • The Vital Art Project, curated by visual artist Mimi Peterson, combines local, regional and national artists in temporary exhibitions held in various venues throughout Racine.[56][57][58]
  • Snowdance 10 Minute Comedy Festival is a playwriting contest in which audience members determine the winning plays. Entries for the contest come from all over the world.[59]
  • Monument Square Art Festival: One of Wisconsin's oldest juried fine art fairs hosts artists from around the country exhibiting painting, photography, jewelry, sculpture, ceramics and mixed media.[60][61]
  • Starving Artists Fair is an outdoor art fair organized by the Racine Art Guild.[62]
  • Downtown Racine First Fridays is a downtown-wide celebration that takes place the first Friday of every month from April through December. Shops, galleries and museums stay open late during the event, which also features musical entertainment, carriage rides and free admission to the Racine Art Museum.[63]
  • Party on the Pavement is an annual event that is Racine's biggest street festival, including live music and art events.[64][65]
  • Root River Festival aims to celebrate the cultures and resources that have shaped Racine. The Festival includes musical entertainment, theater, outdoor activities, community workshops and a showcase for area nonprofits.[66]
  • The Origins of Hip Hop is an annual event in August exploring the culture of hip hop. It focuses on the five primary elements of hip hop culture: DJing, emceeing, graffiti art, breakdancing/all-styles hip-hop dancing and knowledge.[67]
  • Breakfast With the Authors is an annual event that brings different Wisconsin authors to Racine to read from and discuss their work.[68] The event is hosted by The Friends of the Racine Public Library. Each author gives a presentation about their work and life as an author, and the audience then has the opportunity to ask them questions. Past authors that have participated include Carole Barrowman and Michael Perry (author).[69]

Artist workspaces[edit]

  • Racine Business Center/16th Street Studios is a 4-story Cream City brick building renting space for a mix of businesses and art studios. Rentals to artists began in 1996 and have grown to over 60 artists.[70][71][72][73]
  • Mitchell Wagon Factory Lofts is a former factory converted to loft apartments that can be used as artist work spaces. The developer called it "live-work lofts for the creative class."[74][75][76]
  • Black-Eyed Press is a collaborative print shop and book arts studio for independent artists who join as members.[77][78]
  • Hot Shop Glass Studio and Gallery is a glass-blowing studio and gallery, that also offers short workshops that teach this ancient practice.[79][80][81]

Recording studios[edit]

  • Belle City Sound offers professional recording, producing, mixing and mastering services to area musicians.

Performance venues[edit]

Funding opportunities[edit]

  • RAM Artist Fellowships showcase the diversity and vitality of the Racine/Kenosha visual arts community by supporting the professional development of its artists. Four $2,500 fellowships and solo exhibits are awarded every two years to artists at all stages of their careers who are creating outstanding work in a variety of media.[83]
  • Racine Arts Council ArtSeed Program: The purpose of ArtSeed is to encourage and enhance the arts in the Racine area and to foster excitement, support and growth in the arts. ArtSeed provides grants to projects that are new, innovative, experimental and collaborative.[84]
  • Racine/Kenosha Poet Laureate Program encourages creative expression and literacy, while celebrating the power and beauty of language.[85]


Online calendars[edit]

  • Real Racine
  • Racine Journal Times Calendar


  1. ^ Peggy Sue Dunigan, "Wustum Museum Highlights Wisconsin Photography", Express Milwaukee, August 20, 2012.
  2. ^ "Wustum Studio Art Program", Racine Art Museum. Retrieved April 2, 2014.
  3. ^ "SC Johnson Gallery/Frank Lloyd Wright Gallery", ABC7 Video. Retrieved April 2, 2014.
  4. ^ Lee Roberts, "Exhibit spotlights importance of libraries — and funding cuts that threaten them", Racine Journal Times, January 24, 2013.
  5. ^ Lindsay Fiori, Students meet Racine Reads 1 million books goal, Racine Journal Times, February 1, 2012.
  6. ^ Bridget Thoreson, Racine Public Library’s bookmobile had a banner year in 2011, Racine Journal Times, January 21, 2012.
  7. ^ Lee Roberts, "The Racine Heritage Museum showcases Racine County's unique history", Racine Journal Times, January 30, 2014.
  8. ^ Lee Roberts, "Racine Heritage Museum is a window to county's history", Racine Journal Times, September 18, 2014.
  9. ^ Lee Roberts, "Preservation Racine’s Tour of Historic Places: 7 buildings to be featured at Sept. 29 event", Racine Journal Times, September 15, 2013.
  10. ^ Stephanie Jones, "Racine Zoo ramps up marketing; memberships now at nearly 2,000", Racine Journal Times, August 19, 2013.
  11. ^ Lee Roberts, "Local theater groups ready to take the stage", Racine Journal Times, September 12, 2013
  12. ^ "SC Johnson grant boosts Racine Theatre Guild, Children’s Theatre", Racine Journal Times, February 8, 2014.
  13. ^ Elizabeth Snyder, "Racine’s ‘edgier’ community theater has been going strong for 20 years" Prime Magazine, 12/29/2013.
  14. ^ Lee Roberts, "Penguin Players ready to present their spring show, ‘Sing Penguins Sing'", Racine Journal Times, April 27, 2012.
  15. ^ Journal Times staff, "Local poet promoting release of first book", Racine Journal Times, December 8, 2010.
  16. ^ Lee Roberts, "BONK! series to present its 65th show", Racine Journal Times, February 13, 2014.
  17. ^ "Grassroots Wednesday's Open Mic & Artist Showcase", Racine Journal Times, December 11, 2013.
  18. ^ Lee Roberts, "Scene & Heard: Racine County potters play with fire for ArtSpace show", Racine Journal Times, March 20, 2014.
  19. ^ Lee Roberts, "Racine Arts Council to showcase new Artspace during Gallery Night", Racine Journal Times, November 19, 2009.
  20. ^ Aaron Knapp, "Love is in the art: Spectrum gallery artists giving away works during February exhibit", Racine Journal Times, February 8, 2014.
  21. ^ Lee Roberts, "Scene & Heard: Fall entertainment is in full swing", Racine Journal Times, September 19, 2013.
  22. ^ "Racine Art Guild presents first themed exhibition", Racine Journal Times, February 3, 2013.
  23. ^ "Camera Club celebrates 75th anniversary with exhibit", Racine Journal Times, January 9, 2014.
  24. ^ Lee Roberts, "A quilt fan's dream", Racine Journal Times, October 8, 2009.
  25. ^ Lee Roberts, "Bringing it home for Gallery Night", Racine Journal Times, July 15, 2010.
  26. ^ Lee Roberts, "Scene & Heard: Plenty of new local music, art to enjoy", Racine Journal Times, April 21, 2011.
  27. ^ "‘Urban Rhythms’ photography show opens at Artists Gallery", Racine Journal Times, April 1, 2014.
  28. ^ Alyssa Mauk, "Theodore James is featured artist at ArtSpace", Racine Journal Times, July 28, 2016.
  29. ^ "New Gallery Opens in Racine", WGTD 91.1 FM. Retrieved October 3, 2016.
  30. ^ Michael Burke, "Little Glass Bird gallery lands Downtown", Racine Journal Times, December 2, 2017.
  31. ^ "Sand Sculpting is focus of Saturday's Art Venture in Downtown Racine", Racine Journal Times, July 14, 2011.
  32. ^ Lee Roberts, "Forty years between shots - Photo exhibit depicts Downtown Racine then and now", Racine Journal Times, August 3, 2012.
  33. ^ Michael Burke, "Lawyer quits to open pottery studio, gallery", Racine Journal Times, April 26, 2015.
  34. ^ Denise Lockwood, "A Peek into Twice Baked Pottery", Racine County Eye, June 28, 2015.
  35. ^ Lee Roberts, "Scene & Heard: Euphonium soloist to perform with Brassworks Sunday", Racine Journal Times, November 7, 2013.
  36. ^ Lee Roberts, "Belle City Brassworks is going strong after 20 years for the same reason the group got started … for love of music", Racine Journal Times, November 6, 2008.
  37. ^ Alyssa Mauk, "ArtSeed grant award recipients announced", Racine Journal Times, August 30, 2016.
  38. ^ Lee Roberts, "Belle Ensemble presents 'An Old Fashioned Christmas'", Racine Journal Times, December 15, 2016.
  39. ^ Caitlin Sievers, "Belle Ensemble, Park students to collaborate in poetry, musical performance", Racine Journal Times, September 11, 2018.
  40. ^ Lee Roberts, "Choral Arts Society’s upcoming season boasts musical diversity", Racine Journal Times, October 10, 2013.
  41. ^ George D. Fennel, Racine : drum and bugle corps capital of the world, Arcadia Publishing, 2008.
  42. ^ Alan R. Karls, Racine's Horlick Athletic Field: Drums Along the Foundries, The History Press, 2014.
  43. ^ "Racine Concert Band final concert set Aug. 14", Racine Journal Times, August 8, 2016.
  44. ^ "Racine Concert Band strikes up its 96th season", Belle City Magazine, July, 2018, pp. 24-27.
  45. ^ Delbert Eisch, And the Band Played On: A Fascinating Look at the History One of America's Elite Community Bands, Independent publisher, 2010.
  46. ^ "Racine Sweet Adeline Chorus Christmas concert is Dec. 8", Racine Journal Times, December 3, 2013.
  47. ^ Lee Roberts, "Trio of upcoming RSO concerts feature music for a lifetime", Racine Journal Times, March 13, 2014.
  48. ^ "Dairy Statesmen to hold guest night", Racine Journal Times, June 25, 2016.
  49. ^ Lee Roberts, "Sharing the love for Valentine's Day", Racine Journal Times, February 3, 2016.
  50. ^ Lee Roberts, "Scene & Heard: Animal Crackers 2013 lineup unveiled", Racine Journal Times, May 9, 2013.
  51. ^ Lee Roberts, "2014 Jean's Jazz Series: From swing to New Orleans-style jazz", Racine Journal Times, December 19, 2013.
  52. ^ Lee Roberts, "A decade of jazz: Jean's Jazz Series continues to attract wide range of artists", Racine Journal Times, January 13, 2011.
  53. ^ Lee Roberts, "Studio tour offers an inside look at local visual and performing arts", Racine Journal Times, March 28, 2013.
  54. ^ Trisha Bee, Get a behind the scenes look at area art studios, Milwaukee, April 10, 2014.
  55. ^ Journal Times staff, "Weekend Planner: Mustache Bash; OOHP stages new comedy; Artists open house", Racine Journal Times, November 30, 2012.
  56. ^ Lee Roberts, "Treasures of Uptown to be featured at festival", Racine Journal Times, September 25, 2017.
  57. ^ "Get Behind the Arts Studio Tour: Public invited to three days of art", Racine Journal Times, April 23, 2018.
  58. ^ Lee Colony, "EcoFest a celebration — and time to learn about sustainability", Racine Journal Times, March 27, 2018.
  59. ^ Jessica Tuttle, "Laughs by the minute: Racine’s Sixth Street Theatre site of annual Snowdance 10-Minute Comedy Festival", Kenosha News, January 30, 2014.
  60. ^ "Weekend Planner: Buy some art, fly a kite, or go fishing this weekend", Racine Journal Times, May 31, 2013.
  61. ^ Lee Roberts, "Back to Square: Monument Square Art Fair returning to its original home", Racine Journal Times, May 23, 2013.
  62. ^ "Starving Artist Outdoor Art Fair is Aug. 4 on Gateway grounds", Racine Journal Times, July 30, 2013.
  63. ^ Lee Roberts, "More Fridays (and a Thursday) in new First Fridays season", Racine Journal Times, April 3, 2014.
  64. ^ Scott Anderson, "Gallery: Party on the Pavement 2013", Racine Journal Times, September 28, 2013.
  65. ^ Lee Roberts, "Party on the Pavement, Racine's biggest street festival, is Saturday", Racine Journal Times, September 29, 2011.
  66. ^ Cara Spoto, "Inaugural Root River Festival connects locals with nature, each other", Racine Journal Times, September 21, 2013.
  67. ^ Lee Roberts, "The Origins of Hip Hop: Annual event celebrates Racine's cultural diversity", Racine Journal Times, August 18, 2016.
  68. ^ Lee Roberts, "Breakfast with the Authors to feature Wisconsin writers", Racine Journal Times, October 23, 2016.
  69. ^ Lee Roberts, "Breakfast with the Authors highlights Wisconsin writers", Racine Journal Times, October 24, 2015.
  70. ^ Mick Burke, "Racine Business Center turns 100 as incubator", Racine Journal Times, October 1, 2016.
  71. ^ Michale Burke, "Art studios open up for new event", Racine Journal Times, April 2, 2011.
  72. ^ Lee Roberts, "Artists invite all to tour their 'hidden' loft", Racine Journal Times, December 4, 2003.
  73. ^ Lee Roberts, "Scene & Heard: 16th St. Studios to host open house Dec. 1", Racine Journal Times, November 22, 2012.
  74. ^ "Mitchell Wagon Lofts artists to hold open house April 15", Racine Journal Times, April 10, 2012.
  75. ^ Christine Won, "'Neat' finds at Racine art gallery", Racine Journal Times, May 2, 2010.
  76. ^ Michael Burke, "Lofty change: Transformation of Mitchell Wagon Factory turns empty building into a stunner", Racine Journal Times, October 24, 2004.
  77. ^ Lindsay Fiori, "Making their mark: Kids start the presses at printmaking summer camp", Racine Journal Times, July 19, 2011.
  78. ^ Michael Burke, "Black-Eyed Press, collaborative art studio, opens soon", Racine Journal Times, March 16, 2011.
  79. ^ Scott Anderson, "Photos: Working with fire", Racine Journal Times, February 21, 2013.
  80. ^ Gregory Shaver, "Photo: The art of glass", Racine Journal Times, February 23, 2013.
  81. ^ Lee Roberts, "Hot Shop marks first anniversary at Gallery Night", Racine Journal Times, November 12, 2006.
  82. ^ Lee Roberts, "Q&A: Racine a special place for pianist Radoslav Lorkovic", Racine Journal Times, October 20, 2012
  83. ^ Lee Roberts, "RAM Artist Fellowship exhibit at Wustum spotlights work of four local artists", Racine Journal Times, October 31, 2013.
  84. ^ Lee Roberts, "Grant program seeks to expand local arts scene", Racine Journal Times, March 23, 2013.
  85. ^ Lee Roberts, "A passion for poetry: Racine’s first co-poets laureate want to enlighten, entertain", Racine Journal Times, May 21, 2011.
  86. ^ Kevin Poirer, "Snapshot: Group launches magazine to promote local arts scene", Kenosha News, September 22, 2013.
  87. ^ Reading event celebrates release of book, Racine Journal Times, April 11, 2011.
  88. ^ Robin Devereaux, Straylight, "New Pages", January 17, 2012.