Although town officials have never announced it publicly, Rising Sun's Arts Alliance has folded.
"I stepped down. I gave them my resignation letter in November," said Shelley Leishear, the chair and one of the founding members of the Rising Sun Arts Council, which later was named the Rising Sun Arts Alliance.
The group, which hosted numerous successful events since it was founded in October 2014, was led by Leishear in cooperation with anchor members Nikki Spieth and Haley Miller and Crystal Felty. The appointed terms of Spieth and Miller ended in December. Felty whose term expires in 2018, was active with other organizations and resigned her post, explained Leishear. "She was busy with other obligations and was not able to take it over," said Leishear.
The council/alliance hosted Second Saturdays in the Sun, art and music events in 2015. They also gave cash awards to winners of the Rising Sun High Excellence Fair. They also held a gingerbread house contest, beading classes, Sit and Stitch, and led successful and well-attended programs in partnership with the Rising Sun Branch Library.
Artists whose work was shown in Rising Sun at Alliance shows have gone on to find success overseas.
Running the organization was nearly a full time, unpaid job for Leishear, who is a professional artist.
"I'm very sad to not be part of it anymore. But I'm very happy that I have more time to help my mother and go to my 88-year-old grandfather's house. I have more time to focus on family. I have more time to paint and I taught myself to knit," said Leishear.
The council/alliance funded its own projects. Leishear said anything purchased with those funds was left by the members at town hall. That includes Lego stations, supplies, and banners.
"I hope the town works to fill this board. The student awards we presented are very important. I hope the town works to continue the work we did," said Leishear.
Shelley Leishear isn't the only member of her family to resign from a town post. Her husband, Brian, was a former town commissioner who resigned effective November 20, 2016.