Cultural Council Announces Grants

The Reading Cultural Council has announced the award of $6,561 to support the arts and humanities programming of 12 local organizations. “The range of programs supported by the Reading Cultural Council this year highlights the richness of cultural, artistic and experiential projects available in our community,” said Reading Council Chair Donna Schenkel. These programs will all take place at locations in Reading during 2016 and 2017. All are open to the public. Funds are awarded through an application process which can be competitive based on the number of requests and the funds available. Reading’s Cultural Council receives more applications than there are funds available but tries to partially fund worthy projects. Average grants tend to be modest and are reimbursement-based, meaning applicants expend their own money, and if approved for a grant, submit paperwork for reimbursement for the amount of the award. 

  • Universalist Unitarian Church Ivy Chord Coffee House received funds to support acoustic musical performances, October 2016 through April 2017, at the Unitarian Universalist Church, Reading.  
  • The Reading Art Association received funds to support the annual Fall Art Exhibit & Sale held at Reading First Congregational Church, Woburn Street.
  • New England School of Performing Arts received a grant for its winter theater program, a 10-week introduction to live theater for children ages 8-14 years, culminating in a performance at Reading’s Universalist Unitarian Church.
  • Colonial Chorus was awarded funds to support a performance for children and families by Fairytale Players on Saturday, December 10, 2016 at 1249 Main Street, Reading.
  • Delvena Theatre Company received funds to support a one-woman, multi-character show based on Louisa May Alcott’s “Little Women” story to be performed by Lynne Moulton at Reading’s Pleasant Street Senior Center in April 2017.
  • Nancy Genevieve Kohl is supported with an award to serve as the first Writer in Residence at the newly renovated Reading Public Library’s Innovation Studio in March 2017. The Innovation Studio provides a central location where residents can gather and share their skills and passions with neighbors.
  • Reading Community Singers received funds to support the “In the Spirit of Peace” Holiday Celebration Concerts held in December 2016 at Reading’s Old South United Methodist Church.
  • Northeast School of Ballet was awarded a grant to support scholarships for students enrolled at the new Conservatory of the Northeast School of Ballet, Lowell Street, Reading.
  • Creative Arts Reading received funds to support Puppet Playtime, two hour-long interactive performance experiences for young children and their families, March 4, 2017 and April 8, 2017 at the Creative Arts Center, 25 Woburn Street, Reading.
  • North Suburban Child & Family Resource Network received a grant to support a Family Concert for young children by Karen K & The Jitterbugs at the Reading Public Library during February vacation week.
  • Birch Meadow PTO received funds to support a two-day educational visit by writer Daryl Cobb who will work with children all grades in March 2017.
  • Wood End PTO received funds to support a Music and Social Change enrichment program for students in grades 4 and 5 performed by Alastair Moock in March. The program explores how music can be a medium for social responsibility, empowerment, and, change. 

The Reading Cultural Council is part of a network of Local Cultural Councils serving all cities and towns in the Commonwealth. Reading Cultural Council members are volunteers appointed by the town’s Board of Selectmen. The Massachusetts state legislature provides an annual appropriation to the Massachusetts Cultural Council, a state agency, which then allocates funds to Local Cultural Councils which make awards based on community needs. 

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