First of several arts events slated for Carver Center - WEEK.com: Peoria-area News, Weather, Sports

First of several arts events slated for Carver Center

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PEORIA,IL-- This month Carver Center in Peoria kicks off a year long celebration of the arts and culture.  It's part of a plan to bring fiscal stability back to the center.

Carver Center is where late comedian and Actor Richard Pryor honed his passion for acting as a child.  Now one of Pryor's biggest fans Actor Khalil Muhammad wants to bring his show Pryor Truth to Peoria. 

"Why am I doing this, it's the man who has made an impression on my life.  I will forever be effected.  I will forever have an emotional tie to Richard," Muhammad said.

The East coast actor is in Peoria for the weekend, tracing the history and legacy of Richard Pryor.  He even took to the stage for an impromptu act during his visit to Carver Center on Friday.   Carver Center and Ameren Illinois are kicking off a year long celebration of the arts and culture with a concert from Jazz Artist Gerald Albright.  The center's executive director hopes the events will raise more money for the facility. 
/What we want to do is identify not only professional talent that will be coming through Carver but local talent, An example would be the arts, it might be a gospel group, a painter, or people who do crafts," said Executive Director Ken Hinton.

Hinton says United Way funding for the agency has been restored and they're seeking more corporate sponsors.  Three programs are currently being offered and more are slated.  Hinton says with a $350,000. budget it will take time for the agency to become fiscally sound.

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