Polk County builder Southern Homes has renewed its Strategic Partnership with the Polk Museum of Art at Florida Southern College, which helps keep admission to the museum free to the public.
Southern Homes has supported the museum for several years.
“We are strong believers in giving back to the community that we call home,” said Southern Homes Director of Marketing Ashley Link. “The Polk Museum of Art’s exhibitions, classes and cultural events are part of what makes this a vibrant community, and we are honored to support it in its endeavors.”
Executive Director Claire Orologas says the partnership is a key component of the museum’s long-term success because it shows that the community understands the value the museum provides in terms of social, educational and economic benefits to the community.
“Partnerships like this ensure that the museum remains accessible to people from throughout Central Florida, including those in our community who otherwise couldn’t afford to visit a museum,” Orologas said.
As a hometown builder, Southern Homes operates under the philosophy that it is important to continually strive to make Polk County a better place to live. Through this museum partnership, Southern Homes is able to give back to their customers, and all community members, by ensuring they have free access to the museum. Southern Homes co-owner Ed Laderer and his wife, Amy, especially believe in supporting the arts.
“When our oldest son was in high school, he announced that he wanted to be an artist,” said Amy Laderer. “He’s opened our eyes to modern art and the world of collecting and performance art, and we want others to have that opportunity as well.”
The museum unveiled its Strategic Partnership program in 2013 and saw attendance increase 12 percent the first year. Since 2013, attendance is up 7.5 percent, and the program has made it possible to offer free admission every day the museum is open.
The Polk Museum of Art is located at 800 E. Palmetto St. in Lakeland. It is open Tuesdays through Saturdays, 10 a.m. to 5 p.m.; Sundays 1-5 p.m.