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Guilford County distributes $500,000 in CARES funding among 39 arts organizations
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Guilford County distributes $500,000 in CARES funding among 39 arts organizations

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GREENSBORO — Guilford County has distributed $500,000 in federal CARES money among 39 nonprofit arts and culture organizations hurt by the COVID-19 pandemic. 

Since March, the pandemic and resulting government ban on large gatherings have forced music, theater and visual arts groups to cancel performances and exhibitions. That has cost them revenue from ticket, art and concession sales.

The grant money comes from $93.7 million the county received from the federal government to offset lost revenue and other harm inflicted by the pandemic.

Amounts ranged from $2,000 for Friends of the High Point Theatre, to $20,415 for the High Point Arts Council.

“The county’s directive for use of the CARES federal emergency funds was to help address the immediate impacts that COVID-19 has had on our communities while managing the public health emergency response," County Manager Marty Lawing said in Thursday's grant announcement.

"Along with our small businesses and non-profits, our arts and culture organizations were negatively impacted by the health measures necessary to reduce the fast spread of the virus," Lawing said. "We are pleased that the program was so well received and could be used quickly to help stabilize these important organizations.”

Laura Way, president and chief executive officer of ArtsGreensboro, the city’s arts council, and Debbie Lumpkins, executive director of the High Point Arts Council, worked with Guilford County Commissioner and arts advocate Kay Cashion and others to request the $500,000 allocation for arts and culture organizations.

In August, the Guilford County Board of Commissioners approved the allocation.

ArtsGreensboro was selected to manage the grants process. A community advisory commission reviewed organizations' applications and made recommendations. 

ArtsGreensboro recommended grants to 39 organizations throughout the county.

The county Emergency Management Division made final decisions, none of which varied from the ArtsGreensboro review panel recommendations.

To Way, the funding would not have happened without the advocacy and understanding of the arts' value in economic development, arts education and quality of life in Guilford County.

"Kay inspired me with her commitment to the arts," Way said in the announcement. "She was very clear with us — the process had to be equitable and fair, and we needed to support as many organizations as possible."

The recipients: 

African American Atelier: $3,000

Art Alliance of Greensboro: $18,471

Bel Canto Company: $12,835

Carolina Theatre of Greensboro: $13,576

Center for Visual Artists: $12,655

Community Theatre of Greensboro: $20,056

Dance Project: $13,195

Eastern Music Festival: $18,454

Elsewhere: $13,295

Forge Greensboro: $11,353

Friends of John Coltrane: $12,334

Friends of the High Point Theatre: $2,000

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Green Hill Center for North Carolina Art: $19,822

Greensboro Ballet: $12,975

Greensboro Bound: $8,271

Greensboro Children's Museum: $19,237

Greensboro Downtown Parks: $19,237

Greensboro Opera: $13,896

Greensboro Symphony Orchestra: $19,296

Greensboro Youth Chorus: $4,200

High Point Arts Council: $20,415

High Point Ballet: $18,419

High Point Community Theatre: $13,455

Kids Poetry Basketball: $8,000

Magnolia House Foundation: $11,613

Music for a Great Space: $7,300

North Carolina Brass Band: $5,000

North Carolina Folk Festival: $20,231

North Carolina Theatre Conference: $14,326

Piedmont Blues Preservation Society: $10,000

Preservation Greensboro: $12,414

Reconsidered Goods: $11,173

Royal Expressions Contemporary Ballet: $7,690

Southwest Renewal Foundation of High Point: $12,254

TAB Arts Center: $11,004

Theatre Art Galleries: $13,335

Touring Theatre of North Carolina: $13,135

Triad Pride Performing Arts: $2,500

Triad Stage: $19,576

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