LCRA, Bluebonnet Electric Co-op award $25,000 grant for new cultural center

Fayetteville facility will provide space for arts education, performances and civic events

LCRA and Bluebonnet Electric Cooperative representatives award a $25,000 grant to the Fayetteville Community Center Group for construction of an arts and cultural center. The grant is part of LCRA’s Community Development Partnership Program. Pictured, from left to right, are: Kate Ramzinski, LCRA Regional Affairs representative; Cassie Austin, Fayette County court administrator; Ben Kastleman, advisory committee member; Sherry Murphy, Bluebonnet community representative, Giddings area; Mike Stroup, Fayetteville mayor; Byron Balke, Bluebonnet board assistant secretary/treasurer and director, District 6; Margaret D. “Meg” Voelter, LCRA Board member; Pam Reynolds, Craig Moreau and John Reynolds, advisory committee members; Luke Sternadel, Fayette County commissioner, Precinct 2; Reid Bader, advisory committee member; Fred Roberts, FCCG board treasurer; and Keely Mikolajchak, Bluebonnet intern. Pictured behind in backhoe: Wesley Russell, Gaeke Construction.

FAYETTEVILLE, Texas – A $25,000 grant from the Lower Colorado River Authority and Bluebonnet Electric Cooperative will help fund construction of a new arts and cultural center in Fayetteville.

The Community Development Partnership Program grant, along with more than $2 million in matching funds from the nonprofit Fayetteville Community Center Group, will pay for the first phase of construction, which is underway.

The project is rebuilding two historic buildings on Fayetteville’s town square to provide space for arts instruction, performances and meeting rooms for community and civic groups. A second phase of the project will add a state-of-the-art 150-seat theater and catering kitchen.

Jerry Herring, president of the Fayetteville Community Center Group, said the new building will include a spacious theater lobby that also will be available for public events involving schools, nonprofit organizations and other area groups.

“This is truly a civic project,” Herring said, noting it has received more than 700 individual donations.  “Every little bit helps, and all the donations help validate our quest. We’re grateful for the $10 gift and we’re grateful for this CDPP grant. I think the end result will be terrific for the people here.”

Herring and other project organizers envision a cultural center with acting, music and dance programs for children and adults; health and exercise classes; and performance spaces for local and touring individuals or groups.

“In rural communities, arts and cultural education can sometimes take a back seat to other education goals,” Herring said. “We’re trying to fill a gap with a venue that will support drama and other arts and enhance the cultural activities available in our area. When you have a good event, people will come.”

Herring said planning for the new cultural center started in 2019, and the first phase of construction should conclude in about 12 months.

“We’ve been on this path for a while,” he said. “We have saved as much of the old buildings as we could, but the rebuilt replica will be a safe, comfortable and welcoming building. As the years go by, it will just blend into the quaintness of the town of Fayetteville.”

The community grant is one of 44 grants awarded recently through LCRA’s Community Development Partnership Program, which helps volunteer fire departments, local governments, emergency responders and nonprofit organizations fund capital improvement projects in LCRA’s wholesale electric, water and transmission service areas. The program is part of LCRA’s effort to give back to the communities it serves. Bluebonnet Electric Cooperative is one of LCRA’s wholesale electric customers and is a partner in the grant program.

Applications for the next round of grants will be accepted in July. More information is available at

About LCRA

The Lower Colorado River Authority serves customers and communities throughout Texas by managing the lower Colorado River; generating and transmitting electric power; providing a clean, reliable water supply; and offering outdoor adventures at more than 40 parks along the Colorado River from the Texas Hill Country to the Gulf Coast. LCRA and its employees are committed to fulfilling our mission to enhance the quality of life of the Texans we serve through water stewardship, energy and community service. LCRA was created by the Texas Legislature in 1934 and receives no state appropriations.

About Bluebonnet

Bluebonnet Electric Cooperative is one of the largest electric cooperatives in Texas and has been serving its members since 1939. Bluebonnet serves more than 131,000 meters and owns and maintains 12,000 miles of power lines, located across more than 3,800 square miles within 14 Central Texas counties. Bluebonnet’s service area stretches from Travis County to Washington County, and from Milam County to Gonzales County. For more information about Bluebonnet Electric Cooperative, go to Bluebonnet Electric Cooperative and follow the co-op on Facebook and Twitter.

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