WAUSAU – As we navigate a time of economic uncertainty in the wake of the coronavirus pandemic, communities in central and northern Wisconsin are looking for ways to rebound. Along with the tourism industry, the cultural and creative sectors have been hard hit by the economic downturn.

At 10 a.m. today, April 9, Wisconsin Public Radio’s “Route 51” host Shereen Siewert welcomes representatives from three organizations in the region who are finding innovative ways to harness creativity and collaboration to create a positive impact on the local economy.

Lillian Bittman, communications chair of the Waupaca Community Arts Board will discuss efforts to bring art and music back to the region, while CREATE Portage County Founder Bill Schierl and Executive Director Greg Wright will share their vision for building vibrant, welcoming communities through creativity and collaboration. From ArtStart Rhinelander, Program and Operations Director Ashley McLaughlin and Development and Communications Associate Traci Stinebrink will discuss the connection between cultural engagement and the area’s robust tourism industry.

Listeners are encouraged to call in during the program to share their favorite picks or email their favorites to route51@wpr.org.

“Route 51” is heard Fridays at 10 a.m. on The Ideas Network stations 101.3 & 91.9/Wausau, AM 930/Auburndale-Stevens Point, 99.1/Stevens Point, 100.9/Marshfield, 90.3/Park Falls, 89.1/Adams-Wisconsin Rapids, and 89.9/Rhinelander-Eagle River. It is re-broadcast Fridays at 7 p.m. on 90.9/Wausau. Program archives are available at wpr.org/route51.