Mission: To inspire, enrich, and educate the community through the arts

Vision: To forge Sauk Prairie’s artistic identity and cultivate a community that supports artists and patrons of the arts

Thank you for your interest in serving on the River Arts Inc. Board! Here is more information about the role of a River Arts Inc. Board Member.

Board Member Responsibilities 2020

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History of River Arts, Inc.

by Walter Dickey, member of the first RAI Board of Directors

The prospects for a performing arts center in Sauk Prairie looked bleak after three failed referenda in 1995 and 1996. But a serendipitous conversation between Dr. John “Dusty” Koch and his patient, Ramona Kramer, changed all that. They concluded they wanted to help revive the effort by utilizing their contacts from a lifetime of living in and serving the community.

What emerged from that initial exchange was a working group that charted a course to first study the feasibility of and then execute a plan to bring a performing arts center to the community.

The basic plan called for a grassroots effort to identity donors, large, medium and small, to create the funding and develop the community support for the project.

River Arts, Inc., a non-profit, was to be a crucial vehicle for their efforts. It served as the organization through which the generosity of the community was expressed.

From the outset the middle school and high school were to be a featured element in any performing arts program because both had nurtured interest in music and theater. Because of the community’s strong commitment to its students, and viable project needed to partner with the school system. Fortunately, the School Superintendent, Richard Magnuson, and the School Board chaired by Dr. John (Tony) De Giovanni, were strongly supportive. The combination of leadership, hard work and the grassroots convergence of these and a few other factors eventually led to a successful project. The referendum that ultimately passed included the promise of substantial fundraising from the community to which the school district would add funds. A state supplement to the building program reduced the cost to taxpayers of the community and furthered the successful referendum effort.

While thousands of members of the community gave their support, the most vital contributors of money and effort were Darlene Ballweg, the Bank of Prairie du Sac, Culver’s, and those leaders like Dr. Dusty Koch, Tony DeGiovanni and Ramona Kramer who imagined what was possible and then helped to do what it took to make it happen.

Today, the River Arts Center, with the continuing support of River Arts, Inc., hosts performances, visual arts exhibits, community and school plays, as well as countless school district and community events.

Auditorium of the River Arts Center

Executive Director

As a Sauk Prairie native,  Lindsey is no stranger to River Arts, Inc.  You many have seen her at the River Arts Center in numerous musicals and show choir events over the years as she graduated from Sauk Prairie High School in 2003.  Lindsey then attended Viterbo University where she received two Bachelor of Fine Arts degrees in Music Theatre and Arts Administration.  Other highlights of her past include working at Grand Avenue’s Kid’s Club, The Black Hills Playhouse in South Dakota, Chula Vista Resort in the Fabulous Fifties show, and Viterbo University’s presenting and producing theatre in LaCrosse, WI.  For 5 years, Giese traveled the world as the lead singer for Holland America and Celebrity Cruises followed by a year and a half living abroad in Argentina.  In October, 2012, she happily returned to Sauk Prairie and began working at River Arts, Inc.  She continues to sing at house concerts at the gallery and other community events as well as travels around the Midwest with the band, The Dang-Its, in a show called “Sweet Dreams and Honky Tonks: The Music and Lives of Hank Williams, Loretta Lynn, Patsy Cline, and Johnny Cash.”

Gallery & Studio Manager

Kel Mur (she/they) grew up in New Jersey, graduated Cum Laude with a BA in Fine Art from Monmouth University in 2011, and received the Creativity in Studio Art Award for her senior honors thesis, Commodity. After her undergraduate studies, she relocated to New Orleans to develop her studio practice. Kel Mur has exhibited locally and nationally including Audubon Artists, Inc. 69th Annual Exhibition, The Salmagundi Art Club, New York, NY; La Femme, New Orleans Art Center curated by Don Marshall, New Orleans, LA; Women’s Work in the Cyrus M. Running Gallery, Moorehead, MN; Internal/External, Arts Council of Southeast Missouri, Cape Girardeau, MO; WHY MOM, Commonwealth Gallery, Madison, WI; Master Pieces, Manifest Gallery, Cincinnati, OH; Storied References, North Illinois University Art Museum, DeKalb, IL; Empowerment vs. Exploitation, Cultural Center of Cape Cod, South Yarmouth, MA; and Reap a solo exhibition at Art + Literature Laboratory in Madison, WI. She also collaborates with different chefs in her ongoing project series Feast: A Performative Art Dinner. Kel Mur has had artwork published in BARED: Contemporary Poetry and Art on Bras and Breasts (La Femmes Folles, 2016) and HOOT Online Magazine (November 2013, Issue 25), and illustrated the cover art for Sweetbitter by poet Stacey Balkun (Sundress Publications, 2022). She is a former member of the Catalyst Collective of New Orleans, an art and social action initiative in New Orleans, and has frequently volunteered for Mama Maji, a non-profit that funds water projects and entrepreneurial training for women in Kenya. Kel Mur earned her MFA at the University of Wisconsin – Madison in the Spring of 2020 and currently resides in Madison, WI where she has been recognized as one of the Madison Bridge Work Emerging Artists (2020-21) through Art + Literature Laboratory, where she also held a brief tenure as Lead Curator. She is the co-curator of the Collateral Damage Project and Exhibition and has most recently become the Gallery and Studio Coordinator of River Arts Inc. in Prairie du Sac, WI.


  • Nickie Fisher, President
  • Krista Geier, Vice President
  • Matt Klug, Treasurer
  • Dan Kelter, Secretary
  • Teresa Bare
  • Alan Boehmer
  • Jeff Boll
  • Carol May
  • Rick Ross
  • Jared Walker Smith


  • Lea Culver
  • Mary Dickey
  • Pat Yanke
  • Brianna Yanke
River Arts on Water Gallery
River Arts on Water Gallery, 590 Water Street, Prairie du Sac, Wisconsin.