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Art Legacy Project Grants

Grants to Southwest Minnesota Nonprofits for
High Impact Art Projects in Eligible Counties

Agency Type:

Foundation / Corporation

Funding Source:

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Southwest Minnesota Arts Council (SMAC)

Conf. Date:


Deadline Date:

03/20/19 4:30 PM


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Grants of up to $25,000 to Southwest Minnesota nonprofit organizations in eligible counties for important arts projects that leave a lasting impact upon the community. Funding is intended to enhance artistic performance, arts appreciation, and sustainable access to the arts within the region.

The Southwest Minnesota Arts Council (SMAC) Art Legacy Project grant program is open to organizations located in the eighteen counties of the Foundation's service region, including: Big Stone, Chippewa, Cottonwood, Jackson, Kandiyohi, Lac qui Parle, Lincoln, Lyon, McLeod, Meeker, Murray, Nobles, Pipestone, Redwood, Renville, Rock, Swift, and Yellow Medicine.

The grant program provides organizations in the SMAC region with funding in order to stimulate and encourage the creation, performance and appreciation of the arts through large-scale projects that will leave an arts legacy in Southwest Minnesota. An arts legacy project should provide sustainable arts access in the community, with a continuing impact over several years.

Applicants may choose to first apply for an Art Legacy Project Planning grant to fund activities that are necessary for planning their Legacy project, such as requests for proposals from artists, gathering community input, determining available resources and costs, or researching the feasibility or sustainability of a project.

The grant review panel will score applications based on:

- The project's artistic quality and merit.
- The impact on the participants and audience.
- The applicant’s efforts toward reaching the under-served through the project.
- The ability of the organization to accomplish the project.
- The outcome evaluation plan for the project.

Applicants must make the case that their project fulfills SMAC’s program intent and one or more of its commitments. SMAC is committed to:

- Supporting artists and arts organizations in creating, producing and presenting high-quality arts activities.
- Overcoming barriers to accessing high quality arts activities.
- Instilling the arts into the community and public life in the region.
- Supporting high-quality, age-appropriate arts education for residents of all ages to develop knowledge, skills, and understanding of the arts.
- Supporting events and activities that represent the diverse ethnic and cultural arts traditions including folk and traditional artists and art organizations, represented in the region.

GrantWatch ID#:

GrantWatch ID#: 157014

Estimated Size of Grant:

Art Legacy Project grants are available for up to $25,000 or 80% of the total project cash costs, whichever is less.

Term of Contract:

For applications submitted by July 25, 2018, the earliest project start date is September 15, 2018. For applications submitted by December 12, 2018, the earliest project start date is February 15, 2019. For applications submitted by March 20, 2019, the earliest project start date is May 15, 2019.

The start date for a SMAC grant is defined as the point at which the project is set in motion. No funds may be expended prior to the project start date.

Projects must be concluded no later than June 30, 2020.

Additional Eligibility Criteria:

The Art Legacy Project grant program is open to nonprofit organizations in the eighteen counties of the Southwest Minnesota Arts Council (SMAC) service region. The eighteen counties include: Big Stone, Chippewa, Cottonwood, Jackson, Kandiyohi, Lac qui Parle, Lincoln, Lyon, McLeod, Meeker, Murray, Nobles, Pipestone, Redwood, Renville, Rock, Swift, and Yellow Medicine.

The Art Legacy Project grant program is open to nonprofit organizations as described in Section 501 (c)(3) of the United States Internal Revenue Code with Articles of Incorporation on file with the State of Minnesota or official units of city, county, or state government of the State of Minnesota. Any formal organization not meeting this requirement may apply through a fiscal sponsor.

Grant recipients must provide proof of 501(c)3 status for their organization (or fiscal sponsor) before a contract can be issued.

Grants will be awarded in ranked order to applications meeting the criteria, to the extent of funds available. If funding is limited, and the scores of applications near the cut-off point are within 2%, additional considerations will be applied in the following order: artistic merit, first time grantees or final report history, equity (such as native, immigrant, or elderly populations), and geography.

The following projects and organizations are not eligible for SMAC Art Legacy Project grants:

- Applications that do not have an art focus.
- Applications that are primarily for educational projects within a school system.
- Projects for which artists are required to pay excessive entry or exhibition fees in order to exhibit or perform in the project for which funds are sought.
- Activities of a for-profit project, organization, or business.
- Payment of costs for projects that will take place outside the geographic boundaries of the state of Minnesota. Must not use more than ten percent of the total grant award for costs related to travel outside the state of Minnesota, including performer, artist, or consultant travel.
- Costs for relocating the applicant’s legal address/residence outside the State of Minnesota.
- Projects where funds are requested to account for deficits in projects or programs begun prior to the project earliest start date. In other words, payment of debts incurred before the grant activities begin or outside of the grant project scope of activity.
- Applicants with past due SMAC final (or other) reports.
- Applications where funds are to be used to match other SMAC grant applications.
- Requests for new building construction, purchase of real estate, or endowment funds.
- Fundraising events: Grant funding should allow projects to break even, not make a profit.
- Activities which are not open to the public. Projects must be inclusive and accessible in their process and/or final product, considering economic, geographic, and physical accessibility, as well as the cultural, racial, ethnic, age, and gender make-up of the community.
- Activities essentially for the religious socialization of the participants or audience.
- Activities that attempt to influence any state or federal legislation or appropriation.
- Applications submitted for the purpose of regranting, lobbying or scholarships.
- Projects that don’t provide timely promotion of the project throughout the SMAC region with use of the proper funding credit line and logo.

Applicants who have received an Operating Support grant may not include pro-rated general operating costs in the budget for any other SMAC grant program (such as this Art Legacy Project grant program) that occurs during the same time period as the Operating Support Grant.

Pre-proposal Conference:

To learn about the guidelines, requirements, and application process, applicants may register for a Webinar Workshop for SMAC's Art Legacy Project grant program. Webinar Workshops are scheduled as follows:

Round I:

SMAC Art Project & Art Legacy Project grant workshop webinar: Thursday, June 21, 2018, noon to 1 pm CDT.

For information and registration:

Round II:

SMAC Art Legacy Project grant workshop webinar: Thursday, November 1, 2018, noon to 1 pm CDT.

For information and registration:

Round III:

SMAC Art Legacy Project grant workshop webinar: Thursday, February 7, 2019, noon to 1 pm CST.

For information and registration:

While the grant workshop webinars are free, participants must register online to be able to join the meeting. They may also contact Caroline Koska at the SMAC at or by phone at 800-622-5284.

Pre-Application Information:

Deadlines for the 2019 Fiscal Year grants:

Round I

Application Deadline: July 25, 2018
Panel Review: August 18, 2018
Board Action: August 28, 2018
Earliest project start date: September 15, 2018

Round II

Application Deadline: December 12, 2018
Panel Review: January 5, 2019
Board Action: January 26, 2019
Earliest project start date: February 15, 2019

Round III:

Application Deadline: March 20, 2019
Panel Review: April 13, 2019
Board Action: April 23, 2019
Earliest project start date: May 15, 2019

Applications must be submitted online by 4:30 PM on the deadline date.

All applicants will receive email notification of acceptance or rejection after final review of the application by the Board of Directors.

Before beginning an application, applicants are strongly encouraged to contact the SMAC to determine if this grant program is appropriate for their project. To request a review of their application prior to submission, applicants should contact staff at least two weeks prior to the deadline. A staff member will review the application, as time permits, for eligibility and completed requirements.

A 20% cash match on the part of the applicant is required. This means that the applicant match must include 20% of the entire project’s cash cost. Although the minimum required cash match is 20%, applications that include a higher match may receive a higher score and be more competitive in the process.

The applicant must not exceed 90% of the total project’s cash expenses in combined support from the Minnesota State Arts Board and the Southwest Minnesota Arts Council.

If the application receives partial funding, a revised project description and budget must be submitted within 30
days of notification.

Contact Information:

Before starting your grant application, please review the funding source's website listed below for updates/changes/addendums/conferences/LOIs.

For the online application portal:

Caroline Koska, Financial & Grants Administrator

Southwest Minnesota Arts Council
114 North 3rd Street
PO Box 55
Marshall, MN 56258
Phone: 507-537-1471
Toll-Free: 800- 622-5284

URL for Full Text (RFP):

Geographic Focus:

USA: Minnesota: Big Stone, Chippewa, Cottonwood, Jackson, Kandiyohi, Lac qui Parle, Lincoln, Lyon, McLeod, Meeker, Murray, Nobles, Pipestone, Redwood, Renville, Rock, Swift, and Yellow Medicine Counties