Seth Raddatz Gets Young Songwriter Spot at SBSF '08
Posted April 4th, 2008 by Linda

April 4, 2008
Linda Akins

Seth Raddatz is First Beneficiary of Award

STURGEON BAY, WISCONSIN. The Peninsula Arts Association (PAA) has awarded a $2000 ArtFUND grant to the Steel Bridge SongFest to support young songwriters at The Construction Zone. About 25 songwriters are invited to The Construction Zone in conjunction with the annual Steel Bridge SongFest to participate in collaborative songwriting. The grant is earmarked for expenses for participants under age 21 who live in Door County.

Seth Raddatz, a 15-year-old songwriter from Baileys Harbor, Wisconsin, is the first person to be designated as a recipient of the grant award. He will be invited to participate in The Construction Zone with all expenses covered. Coming from a musical family, Seth has been playing guitar since he was 8 years old.

“I learned pretty much everything from my dad, Mark Raddatz,” said Seth. “I’ve been writing my own songs for about a year and I’m looking forward to writing more in this year’s Steel Bridge songwriting festival.”

The songwriting marathon was conceived in 2006 by pat mAcdonald, a Sturgeon Bay native and noted singer/songwriter. Beginning its third season, The Construction Zone has already issued one CD of original music and the second CD is in production. Some 150 songs have been written by songwriters invited to the event. They spend the week writing songs and perform much of the new material in local venues and at the SongFest on Saturday. Songs are recorded and later considered for the CD.

“The mix of seasoned songwriters and passionate newcomers creates a great synergy for collaboration,” said mAcdonald. “It provides an opportunity for the young songwriters to meet renowned national and international songwriters who offer experience, advice and encouragement. These novice songwriters make connections that offer enrichment to their songwriting careers throughout their lives and they become a part of important social and artistic activism. The grant from PAA is so critical in our ongoing need to raise funds for the bridge preservation efforts.”

In only three years, the Steel Bridge SongFest has raised awareness and substantial funds to preserve the Sturgeon Bay Bridge on Michigan Street in historic downtown Sturgeon Bay. Because of the efforts of SongFest participants and the organization of Citizens for Our Bridge, headed by Christie Weber, the bridge has recently been listed on the National Register of Historic Places.

“We are grateful to PAA for funding young songwriters at the Steel Bridge SongFest,” said Weber. “By involving diverse groups of people from many age groups, we have been able to preserve the bridge, foster creativity, and provide great, accessible entertainment for locals and visitors to Sturgeon Bay. Donations and grants like this help us stage the SongFest and the local venue entertainment, yet still raise money for our historic preservation efforts.”

"This project is funded in part by a grant
from the Peninsula Arts Association and
the Wisconsin Arts Board with funds from
the State of Wisconsin."

About ArtFUND
ArtFUND is a regranting program established by the Wisconsin Arts Board (WAB) to make funds available to artists and arts organizations throughout the state. The Peninsula Arts Association is one of 13 agencies in Wisconsin that receives annual state funds which are matched by local monies, dollar-for-dollar, and distributed to worthy arts projects in the local region. The PAA/WAB partnership has distributed over $500,000 to local artists and arts organizations since 1994.

 © Citizens for Our Bridge, Inc.  All Rights Reserved.