Burlington County arts organizations will receive a lift thanks to action by the Burlington County Commissioners to boost the grants available for local arts programming, activities and special events.
The Commissioners voted last week to add $250,000 in federal funding from the American Rescue Plan Act to increase the grants available from the Burlington County Local Arts Grants program. The additional money will supplement funding Burlington County receives from the New Jersey Arts Council and will allow the program to raise the maximum grant to $30,000, up from the previous maximum of $16,000.
“The arts are important part of Burlington County culture and the high quality of life our residents enjoy here, and this additional funding will allow us to provide larger grants at a time when many arts organizations are still struggling to recover,” said Burlington County Commissioner Director Felicia Hopson. “The revenue will help these groups continue to operate and provide valuable programming that help fuel our county’s vibrant and diverse arts scene.”
Applications for 2024 grant cycle are available online at https://www.co.burlington.nj.us/1346/Arts. Applications must be submitted by Aug. 31 to receive consideration.
For 2023, the Commissioners approved a record-high $152,000 in grant awards to 16 organizations for arts programs and initiatives.
Among the programs and projects the grants helped fund were the annual Latino Festival and Hispanic Heritage Celebration organized by Servicios Latinos de Burlington County and the Burlington County St. Patrick’s Day Parade through Mount Holly. The grants also helped fund general operations and performances by organizations such as the South Jersey Pops Orchestra, the Moorestown Theater Company, West Jersey Chamber Music Society, the Bridge Players Theater Company, Faith in Action, the Medford Arts Center and the Lyceum Studio of Fine and Performing Arts in Burlington City.
Burlington County Commissioner Allison Eckel, the liaison to the Burlington County Department of Resource Conservation and Parks, said the County investment in the arts assists local artists and performers and helps generate economic growth for other local businesses.
“The arts serve as economic drivers for our downtowns and local communities. They provide jobs and attract visitors and investment, and help keep our county culturally engaging,” Eckel said. “Our investments in the arts help bring people together and create stronger, more vibrant communities.”