Unlocking Arizona’s Creative Potential

This year, as the Arizona Commission on the Arts celebrates its 50th anniversary, we are proud to launch Next50, a visionary planning initiative designed to unleash the power of the arts in realizing Arizona’s brightest future.

Through innovative programs, strategic investment, exploration and convenings, Next50 will empower communities to activate creative assets and co-create ideas to fuel Arizona’s next 50 years.

Next50 activities put you at the center, focusing on…

  • LISTENING to your stories, your triumphs and aspirations;
  • LEARNING about your unique talents, and your community’s challenges and opportunities; and
  • LEVERAGING – lending our creative and collaborative skills to help Arizonans, and Arizona communities, achieve their most significant goals.

Arizona’s Next50 begins today. Let’s create it together.

This area of the website will become home to invitations and information related to Next50 community programming, research, and grantmaking, to result in innovative creative activities and products, intra- and cross-sector partnerships, publications, policy papers, interactive online tools, and an agency plan.

Visit this page for news and updates.

Next50 begins with you – your voice, your values, and your imagination. You live and learn and work here. You make things happen. You build, explore, and innovate. In so many ways, you are a creative Arizonan.

So we want to know: what, or where, is your creative spark?

Your stories, talent, and dreams drive the Next50 initiative. We want to learn from and with you. Your Creative Spark submissions help us to better understand your perspectives and aspirations, and consider changes to our service in response.

Below are just a few submissions we’ve already received. We hope you’ll share yours!


“Community Theatre” by Linda Miller

“Each theatre represents friends and neighbors working together to enhance life in their community, create entertainment, provide education, build empathy, and support the local economy by circulating dollars back into neighborhood businesses.” Linda Miller, Prescott


“Desert Night” by Mark Hicks

“The magic of a quiet, moonlit desert night has always been a creative spark as well as a refuge for me. I sincerely hope to turn this inspiration into book someday when my illustration assignment and work schedule are lighter.” Mark Hicks of Phoenix.

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“Christmas in Arizona” by Austin Davis

Austin Davis of Mesa shares his poem, “Christmas in Arizona.”

View all submissions »