- Bo Emerson The Atlanta Journal-Constitution
The arts survive in small-town Georgia with the help of patrons, enthusiasts and with a little support from the state.
Some of that support comes from the Georgia Department of Economic Development, which recognizes the connection between a strong arts community and a healthy economy. As a part of that department, the Georgia Council for the Arts reaches outside big cities to communities around the state through Vibrant Communities grants; $300,000 in such grants were announced Monday.
Eighty-four organizations in 64 counties will receive funding from the council, supporting libraries, clubs, ballet and the visual arts and many other endeavors.
The council received 123 applications for funding, requesting more than $467,000. Applicants included schools, arts centers, cities, historical societies, community theatres and boys and girls clubs. The Vibrant Communities Grant is available to organizations in counties that did not receive a fiscal year 2018 Project, Partner or Arts Education grants.
Among the recipients was the Paradise Garden Foundation, which tends to the marvelous outdoor art environment the late Rev. Howard Finster created in Chattooga County; Boys and Girls Clubs of North Georgia (in Gilmer County) and the Okefenokee Heritage Center (in Ware County).
A full list of the recipients is available here.
The Georgia Council for the Arts provides grant funding, programs and services statewide that support the arts industry, preserve the state’s cultural heritage, increase tourism and nurture strong communities. Funding for council is provided by appropriations from the Georgia General Assembly and the National Endowment for the Arts.