Mission: The Riverside Arts Center offers, promotes, and nurtures a dynamic arts and cultural environment in Southeast Michigan through arts education, performing arts, and visual arts activities designed to engage and serve the community.

Vision: The Riverside Arts Center offers diverse and high-quality arts programming that makes a positive contribution to the image, culture, education, and economic development of the Ypsilanti community. A hub of artistic ventures, Riverside Arts Center produces and hosts various fine and performing artist activities in an accessible facility that includes a theater, art gallery, dance studio, artist studios, and classrooms. With a primary focus on the Ypsilanti and Eastern Washtenaw community, Riverside Arts Center provides artistic programming to the surrounding areas in Washtenaw and Wayne counties.

Riverside Arts Center receives operational support from the Ann Arbor Area Community Foundation, Michigan Council for Arts & Cultural Affairs (MCACA) and the National Endowment for the Arts (NEA). See Riverside Arts Center’s annual report for a complete listing of supporting individuals and organizations.

Thank you, Visit Ypsi Now,  for making the above video! We love it.

The Building

The front facade of the Riverside Arts Center (RAC) as seen from Pearl Street.

Located just to the right of the RAC is the former DTE Building, now christened the RAC Off-Center. Between a “Cool Cities” grant and the elevator project this facility provides additional gallery and studio space.

Site of a former car wash, the space to the left of the RAC has been transformed into an inviting plaza. Stairs at the rear of the plaza connect with Riverside Park.

The Theater

The Theater lobby has been remodeled (pictures 6-9). Our “new” theater box office was salvaged from UM’s Hill Auditorium during a recent renovation. A big thank you to the Ypsilanti Heritage Foundation for a generous grant to allow this important preservation project to occur!

The intimate black box theatre space provides a great setting for both actor and audience member alike. The air conditioned space has been most recently used in the summer months for drama camps aimed at both early and later elementary grades. We have both weekly and single day rental rates. Please leave your inquiries at (734) 480-ARTS (2787).

The Gallery

Exhibits generally change every month at Riverside Arts Center. We have one of the largest exhibit spaces in Washtenaw county. (Pictures 10-12)

Located at the rear of the Gallery is a catering kitchen and a wheelchair-accessible restroom.

The Off Center

The DTE building, located on the other side of the Elevator, is the “annex” to RAC and called the Off Center. On the main floor we are hosting the Fly Children Arts Center, the Ypsilanti Youth Theater, Ypsi Creative Arts Programs, the We Are Ypsi youth group, as well as classes, meetings and sometimes even parties.

The Dance Studio is on the second floor and is shared by classes for Russian Ballet, Unveiled Dance, Yoga, Fresh Funk, Dancing Freedom, Ypsi Creative Arts Programs, WISD, Zumba and a variety of rehearsal teams.

The Elevator for Easy Access

Elevator Entrance
The Elevator Entrance into the RAC is located between the two buildings that make up the Art Center venue.

The outside door to the glass tower is locked unless an event is happening somewhere within the facility.

The door should be open for events like a Theater performance or a gallery reception.  If you find it hasn’t been opened yet for an event you are attending, please ask someone heading into the Main Entrance to request it be opened for you.

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Gallery Hours
Thursday – Saturday
3:00 – 8:00 pm
1:30 – 4:00pm
Closed for all Holidays

Our doors are kept open by volunteers. So any Holiday where they would want to be with family, the gallery will be closed.