Doris Barton had a dream…along with many other dreamers and doers…and together we are making that dream come true. Doris, who passed away at the age of 86 in October, 2006, provided seed money in her estate to establish a community cultural center where artists, arts organizations and community members could collaborate, grow, inspire and create for the sake of the Gainesville community and beyond.

In the summer of 2011, a strategic alliance composed of the Arts Association of Alachua County and the Gainesville Fine Arts Association came together with resources, energy and a determination to establish The Doris. In October of 2011, The Doris opened its door at 716 N. Main Street, adding a new vitality to the growing downtown arts district.

The Doris is flourishing as more and more learn about the opportunities to get involved and get inspired.

Statement of Purpose
It shall be the purpose of the Arts Association of Alachua County,Inc. to promote, encourage and support the Arts in Alachua County, to marshal and adopt the community’s resources to the needs of artists in the community, to enhance Alachua County as a cultural destination and
a center of arts activity in Florida, to serve as cultural liaison and to work cooperatively with area artists, arts organization, local government, area schools, the business and professional communities and local non arts organizations by providing services and leadership, and to serve as a vehicle for administering and allocating funds to appropriate applicants.

In spite of the cultural treasures that abound in Alachua County there is no cultural community center.  Alachua County does not have a physical space, a community cultural center, offering facilities for creating, teaching, exhibiting, performing, collaborating, training future artists, developing future audiences, sharing information. There are many cultural organizations in this community that seek a home base.

Under the leadership of the AAAC, the Doris Bardon Cultural Center could become a unifying force for the arts, house a central meeting place, a gallery, and various events.  We envision a place where the talented artists in our community would have a home, where children could explore various arts, performers could share their talents, and especially one where the community throughout Alachua County would feel comfortable.

We hope the Doris Bardon Community Cultural Center will become a place where artists can locate resources, meet and network, and enrich the community by joining together for the arts. To quote Doris, we wish to create a place “where the rich treasures of Alachua County can be
shared with its citizens.”


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