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A local street artist taught high schoolers how to express themselves with spray paint at the Des Moines Social Club. Michael Morain/The Register

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The Des Moines Social Club, a nonprofit organization and entertainment venue dedicated to the local arts community, is facing some financial struggles, according to its board of directors.

"Unfortunately, the current funding model has not sustained the Club’s efforts," a statement from the board read. "Even though 2018 saw respectable increases in revenues, the Club finds increasing operating costs continuing to outpace income."

The organization's 990 forms show a net income of negative $395,329 for fiscal year 2017, negative $255,136 for 2016 and $1,585,158 in 2015. Its net assets were $5,080,079 in 2017, $5,459,492 in 2016 and $5,707,925 in 2015.

Founded in 2008 by Zack Mannheimer, the Des Moines Social Club first operated out of 1408 Grand Ave. and moved into its current location at the the former downtown Des Moines fire station at 900 Mulberry St. At its grand opening in 2014, it also unveiled the Kum & Go Theater, which boasts an auditorium, downstairs bar and rooftop.

Since it moved into its new space, the club has held a wide variety of arts-oriented activities, ranging from showcasing local artwork in the Viaduct Gallery, hosting Beyonce dance classes, throwing a large annual New Year's Eve party, operating a Food Truck Throwdown and showcasing local theater shows and bands.

Following Mannheimer's 2015 departure, the club has gone through various executive leaders, including Peter De Kock, who served as executive director following Mannheimer and most recently Chuck Current, who was hired in 2017.

In May, Current voluntarily resigned from his position, according to the statement.

Neil Salowitz, a former board member, and John McGowan, a current board member, are handling day-to-day executive director tasks on an interim basis.

Mac Stanfield, chair of the board of directors, along with Salowitz and McGowan, are conducting a detailed examination of the Des Moines Social Club's current business model and operations. They are also reaching out to people in the community to "help the Club set a more sustainable course for the future," according to the statement.

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