Buellton has received the esteemed 2022 Helen Putnam Award for Excellence in Economic Development through the Arts.
The League of California Cities recently announced that the Santa Ynez Valley city won the award in recognition of its Arts and Culture Committee, which brings projects to the city and the surrounding area.
Long known as “Servicetown, U.S.A.,” Buellton was viewed by many as a stopping point for those traveling on Highway 101 between Los Angeles and San Francisco. But when Highway 101 became a freeway, motorists could pass the city without stopping.
To encourage visitors to stop and spend more time in Buellton, the city formed the Arts and Culture Committee.
Beyond providing permanent art installations, live performances, educational opportunities and interactive cultural experiences for the community, the program supports local artists, businesses and community-based organizations. It also helps engage tourists and other visitors from outside the community to witness what Buellton has to offer, according to a news release.
Established in 1982 by the League of California Cities, the Helen Putnam Award for Excellence is given annually and recognizes outstanding achievements by California’s 482 cities. The award’s purpose is to promote innovative solutions by city governments. The 2022 winners, recognized for their outstanding programs, were chosen from 155 submissions.
There are 12 award categories, including: Intergovernmental Collaboration, Community Services and Economic Development, Economic Development Through the Arts, Health and Wellness Programs, Housing Programs and Innovations, Internal Administration, League Partners Award for Excellence in City-Business Relations, Planning and Environmental Quality, the Ruth Vreeland Award for Engaging Youth in City Government, Public Safety, Public Works, Infrastructure, and Transportation and Enhancing Public Trust, Ethics, and Community Involvement.