SEMAC announces October 1 grant application deadline


The Southeastern Minnesota Arts Council announces a call for proposals in three categories: arts and cultural heritage, presenter/production assistance, and small towns/rural areas. All proposed projects must begin no earlier than December 1, 2019, and be completed within 12 months, culminating in a capstone event that is accessible and open to the public. Online applications will be available throughout September. The LOI stage of the application must be completed by September 24, with an October 1, 2019, submission deadline.

SEMAC, a nonprofit arts agency, is designated by the state of Minnesota Arts Board as the regional arts council for 11 Southeast Minnesota counties: Dodge, Fillmore, Freeborn, Goodhue, Houston, Mower, Olmsted, Rice, Steele, Wabasha, and Winona.

For information about the grant application process, eligibility, or grant writing assistance, contact the SEMAC office at 2778 D Commerce Drive Northwest, Rochester, Minn., 55901, or call 507-281-4848. Information may also be found at With limited funding available each fiscal year, every SEMAC grant category is competitive and includes an LOI stage used as an initial screening for eligibility.

This activity is made possible by the voters of Minnesota through grants from the Minnesota State Arts Board thanks to a legislative appropriation from the Arts & Cultural Heritage Fund.

Arts and cultural heritage fund grants

Proposals for arts and cultural heritage fund grants ranging from $3,000 to $10,000 are accepted from qualified applicants located in the SEMAC region. A match of 20 percent is required in this category.

The arts and cultural heritage fund will support arts-focused activities in three key areas: arts and arts access, arts education, and arts and cultural heritage. SEMAC encourages applicants to research and develop proposals that incorporate two or more of the key areas with an emphasis on creating lasting partnerships among regional nonprofit arts organizations and other nonprofit groups. In addition to eligible arts organizations, nonprofits that do not have arts as a primary focus, such as schools, senior centers, community education, cultural groups and colleges are invited to apply.

Future funding of arts and cultural heritage fund grants depends on appropriate use of current funding. SEMAC urges arts organizations, non-arts organizations with an arts component, and government entities to apply. Due to the larger awards available, this is a highly competitive category.

Presenter/production assistance grants

Proposals for presenter/production grants offer funding up to $3,000 to qualified applicants located in the SEMAC region. Matching funds are required.

Presenter assistance grants are intended to help regional arts organizations and educational institutions sponsor appearances by touring artists or companies who have demonstrated high levels of artistic quality. These grants are not for local productions or artist residencies in schools.

Production assistance grants support activities by arts organizations directly involved in the creation, performance, publication, and exhibition of art. The two distinct subcategories within production assistance grants are arts production projects and administrative support projects.

Small towns/rural areas grants

The small towns/rural areas grants offer funding up to $3,000 to qualified applicants located in areas of the SEMAC region with populations under 7,500. Matching funds are required.

SEMAC wishes to support and encourage the creation and development of art and arts organizations in communities with populations under 7,500. This support may be used for assistance in activities that directly involve the creation, performance, publication, or exhibition of art. Applicants may include arts organizations, government entities and public or non-religious private schools, either individually or in cooperation. These grants cannot be used to cover the costs of school residencies.


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