Ashley for the Arts Awards The Pump House Regional Arts Center the 2020 “Patron of the Arts”

ARCADIA, Wis. – Although the event was canceled this year, Ashley for the Arts is proud to announce this year’s “Patron of the Arts” award recipient – The Pump House Regional Arts Center. The “Patron of the Arts” award was created to recognize an individual or organization who has demonstrated extraordinary support for the arts. Typically, the music and art festival honors the recipient on the main stage on Friday night of Ashley for the Arts. This year’s presentation was a bit different, but still just as meaningful.

The Pump House Regional Arts Center is a 501(c)(3) non-profit founded in 1977 with a mission to enhance the quality of life in the Coulee Region by maintaining the Pump House as a cultural center, and by promoting a wide range of arts. The space showcases three art galleries, a fully functioning arts studio with a kiln and a small theater.

Through the use of theater, dance, music, visual art, storytelling, and educational experiences, the center strives to celebrate every person and culture in their community.  Their goals are to be accessible, inclusive, and innovative, while focusing on stimulating a regional appreciation for the arts and artists.  They also host an annual festival, Artspire, which is an all-inclusive and free event that attracts, engages and connects the diverse community through meaningful arts experiences.

Funds generated through the organization’s ticket sales, memberships, classes and events help to support their mission, provide free admission to all galleries, tuition sponsorships, and diverse arts programs for all ages. The Pump House has been listed on the National Register of Historic Places and is a Historic Landmark for the city of La Crosse.

Recently, in light of the pandemic, The Pump House partnered with La Crosse Symphony Orchestra, La Crosse Community Theatre, Weber Center for the Performing Arts, and La Crosse Chamber Chorale to develop “La Crosse Arts Online”. “La Crosse Arts Online” is a strategic collaboration of La Crosse arts organizations bringing a wide variety of quality online art and cultural experiences during a time of quarantine and separation. By participating, the organization offers new experiences in visual, performing, film, and literary arts every Thursday.

“We want to congratulate The Pump House Regional Arts Center on this recognition of Ashley for the Art’s 2020 Patron of the Arts award,” said Cole Bawek, Event Director of Ashley for the Arts. “This is a wonderful organization, with a beautiful location, rich with history, and a strong mission to showcase the arts. Many visitors across the Coulee Region have been personally impacted through The Pump House’s efforts and we look forward to many years to come of promoting the artistic flair of our region.”

“We are grateful and honored to accept this award on behalf of the many people who work together to make The Pump House Regional Arts Center the incredible place it is,” said Toni Asher, Executive Director of The Pump House Regional Arts Center. “This recognition from Ashley for the Arts is not only an honor, but also a great encouragement. Thank you and we will continue to bring inspiration and joy, in any way possible, through these difficult times and beyond.”

Ashley for the Arts is an official non-profit and is dependent on funds raised through sponsorships and the generous support of the over 4,000 volunteers annually. The organization is one of Wisconsin’s largest charity events, donating nearly $2 Million since its inception to more than 60 non-profit organizations, including participating schools, children’s charities and medical research.


Ashley for the Arts is a non-profit initiative that provides the entire family with world class entertainment, art, exercise and family fun for a remarkably low cost. It is also one of Wisconsin’s largest charity events, donating over $590,000 in 2019 for more than 60 non-profit organizations, including participating schools, children’s charities and medical research. This music and arts festival was conceptualized and established by Ashley Furniture Industries, Inc. in 2009 and takes place in Arcadia, Wisconsin’s Memorial Park.

For more information on Ashley for the Arts, visit www.AshleyfortheArts.com. “Like” Ashley for the Arts on Facebook and follow us on Twitter @AshleyfortheArt and Instagram @AshleyfortheArts.

Ashley Furniture Industries, Inc. is celebrating 75 years in business this year. Founded in 1945, as a sales company, Ashley has grown into the World’s Largest Manufacturer of Furniture with over 25 million square feet of manufacturing & distribution capacity. From design through fulfillment, Ashley is committed to delivering the world’s best home furnishing values, selection, speed and service, and earning the loyalty and trust of its customers every day. Visit Ashley online at www.ashleyfurnitureindustriesinc.com and “like” Ashley Furniture Industries, Inc. on Facebook.

The Pump House Regional Arts Center in La Crosse, Wisconsin was founded in 1977.  Three art galleries, a theater, classrooms and twin vaulted wood ceilings accent the remodeled interior of the re-purposed waterworks structure, originally constructed in 1880.  In addition to visual arts exhibitions, today the Pump House is home to award winning concerts, drama, comedy, films, classes and more.   Serving as the anchor of the City of La Crosse Arts District for decades, the nonprofit Pump House Regional Arts Center is known affectionately by locals as “The Pump House.”  No admission fee required for the galleries.  Donations welcome.  For further information visit www.thepumphouse.org, or call 608.785.1434.