The Burlington County Commissioners announced a record-high 16 different nonprofit groups will receive $152,000 in grant funding this year to support arts programs and initiatives in the county.
The grants were announced after the commissioners voted to approve the distribution of local arts grants. The awards are expected to help the groups to continue to operate and enrich the county.
The funding for the grants comes from the New Jersey Arts Council and is intended to support visual and performing arts in each of New Jersey’s 21 counties. Burlington County also will use $100,200 in state funding to sponsor arts programs, exhibits and events through the Burlington County Parks System.
“Burlington County is known for its natural scenery and history, but we’re also proud of our county’s vibrant and diverse arts scene,” said Burlington County Commissioner Director Felicia Hopson. “The arts are a big part of what makes our county such a wonderful place to live and raise a family and our board is pleased to support the arts with our own county programs and by distributing these grants.”
The grants were awarded by the commissioners based on recommendations by a peer panel within the County Division of Parks. The grants will support a variety of activities and programs, including general operations, advertising, special exhibits, classes and performances.
Twelve of the organizations received county grants in 2022. Two organizations – the Essence of Harmony Choral Society and the West Jersey Chamber Music Society – were new applicants.
To view the list of approved local arts grants, visit https://www.co.burlington.nj.us.
In addition to distributing the grants, the county has its own lineup of arts programs and performances planned in 2023, including the upcoming Burlington County Short Film Festival on April 28 and April 29, the May Faire festival at Historic Smithville Park on May 21 and the Summer Shows and Music in the Park series this summer and fall.
There is also an ever-changing lineup of art exhibits on display at the Smithville Mansion Annex and Workers House Gallery in Historic Smithville Park and the Warden’s House Gallery in Mount Holly.
Burlington County Commissioner Allison Eckel, the liaison to the Department of Resource Conservation and Parks, said the county receives a big return on its investments in arts programming.
“The arts promote creative expression, critical thinking and thoughtful discussion,” Eckel said. “By investing in programs that help the arts flourish, we’re helping to bring people together and adding to our communities.”