Pahrump Arts Council sponsored a community talent show on Friday at the Pahrump Valley High School auditorium.
Fourteen acts of various disciplines performed for two hours. The audience was treated to local musicians, singers, actors and storytellers. Several drawings, paintings and mixed-media pieces were displayed that night from local artists, and most were being sold at a silent auction during intermission.
All proceeds from the event funded the nonprofit arts council, which is celebrating its 30-year anniversary in April.
The arts council has grown to 130 members in the past decades as it aims to provide environments and opportunities for “anybody to grow in their art, in their crafts — whatever it might be,” according to Shelley Allen, PAC president and member of the Pahrump Community Choir, which performed at Friday’s show.
At its peak, PAC was well-funded and even provided scholarships. But the nonprofit has financially struggled since 2020 when its former president stepped down amid charges that she embezzled from the agency.
Since then, PAC has struggled financially under a cloud of doubt and suspicion.
“We’re basically starting over,” Allen said. “We’re here. We have ideas.”
And she says PAC wants to know how to best serve the artists it represents.
“We’re open for any kind of recommendations or ideas,” she said. “If we can’t provide it, we know who can.”
PAC operates a main office and workspace/gallery at 301 Oxbow Ave. #14, which is available to rent for $10 an hour for PAC members and $20 an hour for non-members. PAC also displays and rotates monthly visual arts at the library, American First National Bank and Living Free Cafe off South Highway 160.
“We need to be a hub when people come into town and they want to get involved,” said PAC Treasurer Oliver Jones, who performed a comedic skit at the talent show on Friday. “They can come see us and we can — boom — put them where they need to be. Connect them with the people that they need to get connected with. Provide opportunities for the community financially.”
Jones said the PAC has a number of ambitions.
“I’d love to give a kid a scholarship to college. I’d love to have them submit (apply) and us pay for their future. We just don’t have enough money right now,” he said.
For more on how to become a member, donor or sponsor find PAC on Facebook.
John Clausen is a freelance writer and photographer in Pahrump.