Thursday, October 06, 2005 | Want to experience immediate gratification this month? Take the time to attend an arts and culture event. October marks National Arts and Humanities Month, a celebration of the nation’s rich cultural resources. California will call attention to the arts on Friday, Oct. 7 – California Arts Day.

There are a wealth of arts and culture experiences to be had in San Diego County during October and every day of the year. Our region is home to a large and wonderfully diverse arts community that offers something for every taste and budget, from the classics to the edgy and hip. Music, dance and theater companies perform in virtually every corner of the county nearly every day of the week. Dozens of museums, galleries and public art installations can be found throughout the region. Several film festivals take place in San Diego County, too. The region’s exceptional weather makes it possible to attend a festival featuring music, dance and food almost every month of the year, including October.

We lead busy, full lives and spend significant amounts of time commuting to our jobs or shuttling our children to their extracurricular activities. It is easy to take the arts for granted or procrastinate on that resolution made earlier this year to attend more cultural events.

However, we cannot assume that we will always have a wealth of arts and culture events available if we do not participate. Performance of music, dance and theater, festivals and museums all need audiences to keep the doors open, along with volunteers and financial support. Participation is essential to the future of our arts and culture organizations. Use it or lose it, the saying goes. It certainly applies to the arts.

San Diego County has much to celebrate when it comes to arts and culture. So, make a special effort to enjoy the arts in October by attending a show or concert, visiting a museum, or explore a new neighborhood by visiting a festival.

Stephanie Casenza, MS, APR, is executive director of the San Diego Performing Arts League, a nonprofit organization that has worked to promote and advance music, dance and theater throughout San Diego County since 1984.

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