Walmart Gives More Than $17 Million In Quality Of Life Commitments To Northwest Arkansas

BENTONVILLE (KFSM) -- Walmart announced Tuesday (June 19) more than $17 million of commitments to enhance the quality of life in Northwest Arkansas.

The grants will support increasing access to high-quality, accessible and relevant arts and recreational amenities, according to a press release.

The groups receiving grants include the Walton Arts Center, Ladies Professional Golf Association, Crystal Bridges Museum of American Art, Northwest Arkansas Community College, and TheatreSquared.

“Walmart is proud to give back locally in the community where we operate,” said Dan Bartlett, executive vice president of Corporate Affairs at Walmart. “Our success is intertwined with the success of the region and these investments, along with the recent announcement to build a new Home Office, reflect a continued commitment to improve the lives of all residents in Northwest Arkansas.”

The company said the grants will strengthen the vibrancy of the region and bring additional economic opportunity to the surrounding area.

This money will keep Walmart in the name of the Walmart Arkansas Music Pavilion for the next 20 years.

"We`re really excited for that title sponsorship. It also allows us to continue to bring the great artists that we do from all over the world here to Northwest Arkansas," Peter Lane said.

President and CEO of the Walton Arts Center and the Walmart AMP, Peter Lane said this grant will also help them with the expansion of the AMP they've been planning.

“This gift will allow us to do a lot of things around our patrons. So there will be a lot of improvements for our patrons as well as for our artists. So really it’s a big picture idea," he said.

Theatre Squared artistic director Bob Ford said it’s great to be recognized for the work they have done to build Theatre Squared.

“To be kind of up here with Crystal Bridges and the Walton Arts Center. Then not to mention this gift is really meaningful for us as we build our new theater," Ford said.

The Walmart Foundation also announced more than $5 million to strengthen the long-term capacity of the region to meet healthcare infrastructure needs at the Mercy Health Foundation and Northwest Arkansas Community College.

“For us to be able to make sure that Mercy a flagship hospital in the region is able to meet the demands of the community is something that is really important to us," Bartlett said.