The Miles Davis Memorial Committee will unveil a sculpture of world-renowned jazz musician, Miles Davis, at 5:30 p.m. Saturday, Sept. 12, on West Third Street in downtown Alton. Festivities will begin at 5 p.m.
ALTON — The Miles Davis Memorial Project received a $5,000 grant June 2 from Ameren Illinois to support the improvement of the River Bend community through the creation of a music plaza and a sculpture of world-renown musician Miles Davis.
“We greatly appreciate Ameren Illinois’s support of the project and sharing our vision of community improvement as well as recognizing the importance of the arts and the wealth of history within this community,” Project Chairman Pat Ackman said. “The funds will help ensure completion of the music plaza, where the sculpture will be displayed, and the project as a whole.”
Miles Davis was born in Alton on May 26, 1926. Although he lived here for a short time as a child, he always recognized Alton as his place of birth. Through the partnering of ideas from the Jazz Committee of the Alton Museum of History and Art and Pride Inc., the committee of the Miles Davis Memorial Project was formed to honor this musical legend and his historic connection to Alton. This is a major beautification project for the downtown historic district and creates a special tourist attraction to the area as the only publicly displayed statue of Miles Davis in this country. Others exist only in Poland and France.
The grant funds were made available through the Ameren Cares program, which connects Ameren Illinois with the communities it serves through charitable giving and volunteering. Richard Mark, president and CEO of Ameren Illinois, said a key focus of this program is to partner with nonprofit organizations like the Miles Davis Memorial Project and Pride Inc. to improve the quality of life in Ameren Illinois’ service territory.
“The arts are the heart of any healthy, vibrant community. We hope these funds help unite the Riverbend communities,” said Gussie Reed, Director Division V, Ameren Illinois. “We are proud to invest in organizations like Miles Davis Memorial Project that make cultural exhibits more accessible.”
The unveiling date for the sculpture is scheduled for Sept. 12. Planning for the event is in progress. For information, call (618) 467-2375 or (618) 466-1079, visit www.prideincorporated.org or email firstname.lastname@example.org.