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Arts Groups Benefit From Record-High Cultural Fund Awards


Arts and cultural organizations around the state will benefit from this year’s record-breaking Oregon Cultural Trust grants. The awards, totaling $2.6 million dollars, are up 30 percent over last year.

The Oregon Cultural Trust is funded by Oregon residents, who receive tax credits for their donations. This year’s record high giving, together with a legislative change to the distribution model, allowed the Trust to distribute more money than ever. The Lane Arts Council received over $21,000 for an “arts asset map.” Executive Director Liora Sponko explains:

Sponko: “We are going to survey schools throughout Lane County to find out how many art teachers do they have? How many music teachers? What are the gaps? How are community arts organizations supporting their work? So we’ll really understand what the needs are, what the gaps are.”

Once they see what’s missing, Sponko says they’ll work with local arts groups to fill the needs. She suspects rural schools will need the most assistance. Other Lane County grant winners include the U of O’s Museum of Natural and Cultural History and the Eugene-Springfield Youth Orchestras.

Karen Richards joined KLCC as a volunteer reporter in 2012, and became a freelance reporter at the station in 2015. In addition to news reporting, she’s contributed to several feature series for the station, earning multiple awards for her reporting.
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