BRATTLEBORO -- The National Endowment for the Arts has awarded a $50,000 grant to Brattleboro and the Arts Council of Windham County for a study of the feasibility of creating a cultural district in the town.
In addition, the money can be used to commission a piece of art or some sort of performance.
"I am excited to see this collaboration between the Town and ACWC, and with this grant the Town Arts Committee will receive well deserved recognition for the contribution they are making to the future of Brattleboro," stated Town Manager Barb Sondag in a press release announcing the awarding of the grant.
The Brattleboro Project is arranged in three tracks: cultural asset mapping exercises; an investigation into the designation of a cultural district; and a celebratory public art piece or performance that speaks to the community’s recent experiences.
Each track will demonstrate how the arts can play a deciding role in the intentional creation of place and community. The project is an early opportunity to act on the goals and policies of the forthcoming town plan which recognizes the contribution the creative sector is making to Brattleboro’s future.
According to the press release, the NEA Our Town grants support creative placemaking projects that help transform communities into lively, beautiful, and sustainable places with the arts at their core. The grantee projects will improve quality of life, encourage
All Our Town grant awards were made to partnerships that consisted of a minimum of a not-for-profit organization and a local government entity.
The NEA received 317 applications for Our Town that were assigned to one of three application review panels based on their project type; arts engagement, cultural planning and design, or non-metro and tribal communities. With only 80 grants emerging from the 317 applications, or a success rate of 25 percent, competition was strong, a testament to the artistic excellence and merit of the Brattleboro project, stated the press release.
Our Town grants were inspired by NEA Chairman Rocco Landesman who began in 2009 a national conversation around "creative placemaking," how cities and towns are using the arts to shape their social, physical, and economic characters.
Forty-one of the 80 grants are going to communities with populations of less than 50,000 and five grants were made to communities with less than 1,000 residents.