Center Overview

History

In January of 2020, the ArtsAltoona Center as we know it today was gifted to the organization from the congregation of Simpson-Temple United Parish. Around that time, ArtsAltoona was looking for a new place to call home. Through a twist of fate and discussions with the congregational council of the church, we were able to take on ownership of the campus, consisting of a church, an Education building, a parking lot, and a large grass lawn. The congregation would still be able to worship in the church on Sundays, and ArtsAltoona began to make plans to upgrade the facilities and transform them into a thriving Arts Center.

Our visions for the space began to come to life in early 2020. Throughout the year (and amidst a global pandemic) work on the buildings took place including painting the basements of both buildings, updating the plumbing and sewer systems, electrical work, replacing furniture, updating signage, a lot of cleanup, and various other small projects. Two large scale murals have been painted on the exterior. Building projects are ongoing, and we are constantly working on ways to make the space as versatile as possible.

About Our Space

The ArtsAltoona Center consists of two buildings, an Education Center and a Performance Center. The Education Center houses a multi-use basement room, the Blank Canvas, to be used for art classes, meetings, events, parties, intimate performances, and more! It is also home to a fully equipped licensed commercial kitchen. Located on the first floor are the offices for ArtsAltoona staff and Simpson-Temple United Parish, a large conference room (the Ward Room) and a smaller meeting room (the Library). The third floor is currently home to the Altoona Area School District Adult Education Program and the Brian Morden Foundation.

In the Performance Center is our largest venue, the Sanctuary, a 450-seat space. In the basement of the Performance Center is the Grotto, a more intimate venue to be used for smaller performances, cocktail hours, and events. Outside on the lawn, the Mural Green will be used for outdoor concerts, festivals, and outdoor events.

Directions from I99

  • Take exit 33 for 17th St., keep right at the fork. Follow signs for Penn State/Altoona
  • Merge onto 17th St. 
  • Turn left onto Pleasant Valley Blvd (US 220)
  • Turn right onto 22nd St. After going through the light at 6th Avenue, the ArtsAltoona Center parking lot is on the left.

Parking

The parking lot is located on the back side of the buildings off of 6th Avenue between 22nd and 23rd streets. Additional parking may be available and will vary by event. Information will be provided for specific events.