The Southwest Minnesota Arts Council awarded $93,486 to local organizations for Art Project grants. Local recipients included:
- The Minnesota Pottery Festival, Hutchinson, was awarded $6,956 for the eighth annual event on July 27-28. Funding will go toward reaching new and diverse audiences. The festival takes place outdoors on the grounds of Clay Coyote Pottery and Gallery. About 35 potters from across the country will be present. The festival includes artisans selling their work and doing demonstrations, games and competition at the pottery Olympics, kids activities, food and more.
For more information, visit mnpotteryfestival.com.
- RiverSong Music Festival, Hutchinson, received $7,000 for this year's event on July 12-13 at Masonic/West River Park. The two-day, rain-or-shine festival features 15 artists performing a variety of music ranging from Americana and rock to roots, reggae, Cajun and more on two outdoor stages. This family-oriented music gathering includes children-focused performers and workshops, food and beverage vendors, children's activities and on-site camping. It is volunteer-run made possible by community support. For more information, visit riversongfestival.org.
In other arts council news
Arts Advocacy Day is on Tuesday, March 12. Make your voice heard about the value of arts in Minnesota. Depending on the number attending, SMAC can provide transportation to St. Paul Monday evening, March 11, as well as partial or full support of supper and lodging that night. In the morning, travel with SMAC members to meet with legislators and other advocates throughout the day. To participate in Arts Advocacy Day, email SMAC at firstname.lastname@example.org prior to March 1 to be placed on the list for car pooling, supper and/or lodging.
In case you're not familiar with Arts Advocacy Day, every year, Minnesota Citizens for the Arts works to increase arts funding by bringing arts advocates to the Capitol to talk to their legislators about the importance of the arts to Minnesota's citizens and economy. Every year 500 arts advocates join together for a rally at the Minnesota History Center Auditorium in the morning, split up into teams with experienced leaders and walk together to legislator offices to educate them about the arts in their communities and ask them to support arts funding. Previous Arts Advocacy Days have resulted in significant increases in state arts funding (that goes out in grants from the Minnesota State Arts Board and regional arts councils). The Legacy Amendment, which tripled arts funding in 2008, was passed on Arts Advocacy Day.
In 2018, the Minnesota State Arts Board and Regional Arts Councils system awarded more than 2,000 grants, which reached all 87 counties, helping to make the arts accessible to all Minnesotans.