Awards & Recognitions
Old School Square was the catalyst for the redevelopment and revival of downtown Delray Beach back in the early 90’s. The center was recognized nationally with feature articles in Preservation Magazine and in Florida Trend when they named Delray Beach the “Best Run Town in Florida.” Old School Square was one of three anchor projects that won Delray Beach the coveted All-America City designation in 1993. Old School Square was recognized for turning the abandoned school buildings into a vital cultural arts center. In 1994 the center was nationally recognized as one of three Best Practice Winners by Partners for Livable Communities and the International City/County Management Association. The Old School Square project and Delray Beach were featured in a presentation at the Smithsonian Institution for National Leadership Forum on “Culture Builds Communities” and were singled out as an exemplary model of a community that used the arts to institute a positive change in the community.
Old School Square received three awards from the Florida Trust for Historic Preservation for outstanding preservation of a non-residential structure. Frances Bourque, Founder and Chair Emeritus, received the 1993 Distinguished Service Award for Historic Preservation in the state of Florida and the Sun-Sentinel Outstanding Community Service Award for Palm Beach County. She was honored with the Florida Arts Recognition Award in 1998, and in 2004, was honored by the Florida Trust for Historic Preservation with the Trust’s first Evelyn Fortune Barlett Award, which recognizes an individual whose commitment to an individual project or property has insured that it retains its integrity and significance. In 2006, Mrs. Bourque was honored with a Bank of America Hometown Hero Award for her work in preserving the buildings and creating the cultural arts center, Old School Square.
Old School Square was awarded a state historic preservation grant to create a pictorial history of Old School Square and its transformation. “Alumni Hall” in the Crest Theatre building houses this exhibit. The center was also honored with an Exemplary Business Partner Award by the School District of Palm Beach County in May 2001 and with the George Washington Honor Award by the Freedoms Foundation at Valley Forge in September, 2001.
In 2012, Old School Square was recognized by the Gold Coast PR Council for its brand awareness campaign, “A Total Arts Experience — Events, Theatre, Exhibits and Learning.”