New coordinator for Silver Bells

By James Sanford

Arts Council turns over production duties on annual event to Lansing Principal Shopping District

When it began in 1985, Silver Bells in the City was a modest holiday celebration; now, it features fireworks, an electric light parade and the illumination festivities of Michigan's official Christmas tree.

The Arts Council of Greater Lansing has handled the set up and production of the event since its start. But the organization is now turning over those duties to the Lansing Principal Shopping District.

Arts Council executive director Leslie Donaldson said last year's Silver Bells attracted an estimated 150,000-180,000 people to the downtown area.

Since 1985, the Arts Council of Greater Lansing has
worked with the City of Lansing and thousands of regional volunteers, partners
and sponsors to grow Silver Bells in the City from its humble beginnings into a
premiere Mid-Michigan event which includes an electric light parade, the
lighting of Michigan’s official Christmas tree and fireworks over the state

After creating this event and producing it for 25
years, it is time to pass the baton. In 2010, Silver Bells in the City will be
coordinated by the Lansing Principal Shopping District.

“It is with much pride for
the success that Silver Bells in the City has achieved and its positive impact
on the greater Lansing community that the Arts Council transfers coordination
of the event,” said Leslie Donaldson, executive director of the Arts Council of
Greater Lansing. “We plan to focus on the more immediate needs of our constituents
who have been affected by recent cuts in public funding to the arts. We are
confident the rich tradition of Silver Bells will continue under the leadership
of this long-time community partner.”

“The Arts Council has done an
amazing job of coordinating and growing Silver Bells in the City over the years
into the region’s signature holiday event,” said Mindy Biladeau, executive director
of the Lansing PSD. “We are honored to be able to coordinate this event this
year and to carry on the tradition for generations to come. We are looking
forward to working with a number of community partners and volunteers to make
the 26th Annual Silver Bells in the City a night to remember.”

The Lansing PSD is committed
to creating a thriving world-class capital city by making our downtown and
surrounding neighborhoods united, vibrant, economically strong, and culturally
dynamic through promotions, design, business development and organization.

“On behalf of the Arts
Council of Greater Lansing, I would like to express our deepest appreciation
for the community’s support of Silver Bells in the City during the past 25
years,” Donaldson said, “We hope the community will continue to support the
success of Silver Bells as an event that defines our region and brings joy to
our families and our state.”

in 1965, the Arts Council of Greater Lansing is a non-profit organization whose
mission is to lead, advocate for and advance arts and culture in the capital
region. For more information, visit