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It's your lucky day, art lovers! 

It turns out Friday, July 13, is an auspicious day for the local arts community. That’s when Craig Watson, director of the California Arts Council—that’s the state agency appointed to encourage public participation in, and appreciation of, artistic endeavors—will pay a visit to San Luis Obispo County. In a free public forum, Watson will discuss “the intersection of government, business, and the arts,” according to press materials.

“I have seen firsthand the power of the arts to revitalize economically and culturally challenged communities,” Watson said. “Recent studies are compelling—access to the arts and arts education pay huge dividends educationally, culturally, and economically.”

Watson has a background in business and government in addition to the arts. Before his transition to working with arts organizations—Watson has worked for Rural Arts Services in Northern California in addition to the Arts Council’s regional branches in Long Beach and Sonoma County—he also held senior executive positions in the field of telecommunications. Before that, Watson studied fine arts at Occidental College and trained as a sculptor.

While in town, Watson will take a tour of public art sites and areas of cultural interest, meet some local artists—visual, literary, and performing—and speak with arts organizations throughout the county.

So don’t be culturally challenged! Hear Watson speak on Friday, July 13, from 3 to 4 p.m. at the San Luis Obispo County Library, 995 Palm St. downtown.

Watson’s visit to SLO County is hosted by the San Luis Obispo County Arts Council, also known as ARTS Obispo, the designated local partner of the state agency. (Ever gone to Art After Dark? ARTS Obispo does that.) Find out more at

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