$2.3M in Grants Disbursed to Local Arts, Cultural Groups

Nearly $2.3 million in coronavirus relief funds are being disbursed to more than 60 arts and cultural institutions in Clackamas and Washington counties, including the Clackamas County Fairgrounds and Events Center, Canby Pioneer Chapel Performing Arts and Canby Historical Society.

The fairgrounds will receive $187,287, the Chapel $16,544 and the Historical Society $3,545, during a time in which their primary sources of revenue (events, shows and fundraisers) have been largely curtailed by the coronavirus pandemic.

A partnership between the Oregon Cultural Trust and its County and Tribal Cultural Coalitions, the funds were allocated for Oregon cultural organizations facing losses due to the health crisis and were made available through a $50 million relief package approved by the Emergency Board of the Oregon Legislature in July.

A total of $25.7 million was granted by the Oregon Cultural Trust, slightly more than half of which was allocated to Multnomah County and Portland, one of the state’s largest cultural centers.

The Clackamas County Arts Alliance, the fiscal agent and grants administrator for the Clackamas County Cultural Coalition, was also selected to help administer grant funds for Washington County after the Cultural Coalition in that county declined to accept the management of their awards.

“Many of these Washington County organizations represent partners and friends with whom we collaborate, and we understand the detrimental impact Covid-19 has inflicted on our county’s own cultural organizations firsthand,” said Alex Stoehr, associate director of the Arts Alliance. “We had to help!”

Oregon Cultural Trust director Brian Rogers said he was particularly grateful to the Clackamas County arts and culture organizations who stepped up to assist their neighbors in Washington County.

“As soon as I sent out the notification to the 32 organizations in Washington County, my inbox lit up with a lot of ‘thank-yous’ and ‘this is a huge relief’ and ‘this is greatly appreciated, please send our deepest thanks to the Clackamas County Cultural Coalition,'” he said.

The intended use of the CRF Cultural Support funds is to provide financial assistance to cultural nonprofit organizations and community venues that have canceled or postponed public programming because of public health executive orders associated with the Covid-19 pandemic.

Eligible organizations include cultural institutions, county fairgrounds, cultural entities within federally recognized Indian Tribes based in Oregon, festivals and community event organizations, in addition to some for-profit organizations that have significant cultural impact in their communities.

Guidelines for the funding are in accordance with the U.S. Department of the Treasury.

The Clackamas County Fairgrounds received a grant of almost $200,000 in coronavirus relief funds. Photo by Tyler Francke.

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