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As Featured in The Berea Citizen Living Section
A ten-week outdoor music series may take place in Berea this next summer, if a partnership between the Berea Arts Council, Berea Tourism, First Friday Berea, and the Berea College’s Entrepreneurship for the Public Good (EPG) program results in funding from the Mortimer and Mimi Levitt Foundation.
The Levitt AMP grants, though the Levitt Foundation, strive to strengthen the social fabric of America through free, live music. Ali Blair, one of the organizers of First Friday, became interested in this grant as one way to fund the outdoor concerts that have been offered in Berea through the First Friday evening concerts, and Berea Tourism’s August concert series.
“We’ve been working on the partnerships for this grant for around 2 ½ months,” Blair said. “Both the First Friday concerts and the tourism summer concert series would be folded in if we receive the grant.”
If Berea’s grant application is successful, the concert series would take place in Old Town Artisan Center, in front of the old cabin, and would run from June to August for ten consecutive weeks. The Levitt Foundation’s goals are for these live concert series to appeal to a diverse population, and be accessible for people from all socio-economic levels and abilities. According to Blair, successful grant applications must also include a vibrant use of public spaces for the events.
All of the grants have been posted to the https://grant.levittamp.org website. The 25 grant applications that receive the most online voting will be selected for review, and the Levitt Foundation will then select 15 of the strongest applications from the 25 for funding. Winning organizations will receive matching grants of $25,000. The Berea grant is listed under the Berea Arts Council, which applied for the grant.
People can vote once per email address; the voting deadline is Nov. 21 at 8 p.m. The winners will be announced on Jan. 5, 2017.
A quote from Berea art application reported that, “Art and specifically music, is seen as a communications bridge between differing worldviews and socio-demographics. The Levitt AMP Berea Music Series would offer an accessible, diverse cultural enrichment opportunity and serve to increase public awareness of and appreciation for the work of musicians as artists, helping Bereans reconnect with our roots, asserting the kinship of all people. When we meet together with a playful spirit, we are more likely to recognize our humanity during controversy.”
The College’s EPG program will be collecting data, if the grant application is successful, to measure the economic and cultural impact of the event.
Berea College EPG, Berea Tourism, and First Friday Berea ask supporters to spread the word to family, friends, colleagues and neighbors to sign up and vote for Berea’s proposal. Learn more at http://levittamp.org