Photos of MRAC-funded events
January, 2013  
In This Issue
Community Arts Awards
Community Arts Workshops
Arts Learning Panels
Creative Intersections Workshops
Arts Learning Workshops
Next Step Fund Workshops
FY12 Annual Report
Need Photos!
Resource Updates
Holiday Hours
Logo Webpage
Construction Updates
Forward to a Friend
MRAC on Facebook
FY 2012 Summary
Quick Links

One of MRAC's three vision statements is: Public value of the arts is understood and acted upon by community members, leaders and policy makers. We realize this vision through the dissemination of this newsletter, information on our website, press releases, and communication with legislators about grants awarded in their districts. A key additional component to realizing this vision is you and your commitment to arts advocacy. This is demonstrated by sending thank you letters to your legislators, attending MRAC's Big Check events, and responding to calls to action from Minnesota Citizens for the Arts (MCA).

One of the most important (and most fun) ways to help policy makers understand the public value of the arts is by attending Arts Advocacy Day organized by MCA. Every year, arts advocates from around the state gather at the Minnesota State Capitol to tell their representatives how important the arts are to their communities. The 2013 Arts Advocacy Day is scheduled for March 7, 2013. We -- and MCA -- will have more information about Arts Advocacy Day in the coming weeks, but meanwhile please save the date, and we'll see you at the State Capitol in St. Paul.

During January, MRAC will conduct its annual survey of constituents. We will be seeking your feedback regarding our grant programs and other services to assess how well they are being delivered and consumed. I hope you will take a few minutes to respond when you hear from us, and I thank you in advance. 


Jeff Prauer
MRAC Executive Director

Community Arts Awards

In December, MRAC awarded 287,974 to 61 organizations/projects in the first round of its FY 2013 Community Arts grant program. The Community Arts grant program utilizes a block grant system to ensure funds are distributed broadly in the seven counties in MRAC's service area. The organizations and projects chosen demonstrate both strong artistic quality and a connection to a community. This round's funded projects include: early childhood music classes in Anoka County, a literary and performing arts event in Carver County, three coffee concert recitals in Dakota County, a juried art competition in Scott County, a Hip-Hop festival in Washington County and many other theater, art, and music events/projects around the 7-county metro area.  

Visit for a list of this round's grant recipients sorted by the county of activity that includes award amounts, project summaries, and links to the grantees' websites when available. Please note that the core cities of Minneapolis and St. Paul are separated from the surrounding suburban Hennepin and suburban Ramsey counties. 

Community Arts, Round 2 - Grant Deadline 
The next deadline for Community Arts grant applications is Monday, January 7, 2013, with an earliest project start date of March 27, 2013. All applications must be received in the MRAC office by 5:00 P.M. on the deadline day.

Visit the
 Community Arts grant program page for more information about the grant program and to download the guidelines and application forms.

Arts Learning Grant Panels

The FY 2013 Arts Learning, Round 1 grant applications will be reviewed January 23, 24, and 25. The panel review meetings will begin at 9:00 A.M. with a short panel re-orientation. Click on the linked panel date to see the order of reviews for that day.


Wednesday, January 23, 2013

Thursday, January 24, 2013

Friday, January 25, 2013


MRAC panel meetings are public, open meetings, and constituents are encouraged to come and listen to the reviews to gain a fuller understanding of the process and hear the panelists' comments directly. Applicants may listen to the proceedings but are not invited to make presentations or participate in the panel's discussion. The panels will be held in the MRAC conference room at 2324 University Avenue West, St. Paul, MN 55114.


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Creative Intersections Grant Application Workshops

The FY 2013 deadline for the Creative Intersections grant program is Monday, February 11, 2013 with an earliest project start date of April 24, 2013.

The Creative Intersections grant program supports innovative partnership projects that use art and culture to strengthen communities. MRAC offers workshops to help groups prepare Creative Intersections grant applications. Participants become familiar with the program and application forms and learn how to write effective MRAC grant proposals. This is a great opportunity to get questions answered on your project ideas. The Creative Intersections grant application workshops will be held:

Thursday, January 10, 2013 - 3:00 P.M. to 5:00 P.M.
Monday, January 14, 2013 - 1:00 P.M. to 3:00 P.M. 

The workshops are free, but we ask that you register in advance. Please click on the linked workshop date to register. The workshops will be held in the MRAC conference room at 2324 University Avenue West, St. Paul, MN 55114. Please contact us if you need special accommodations to attend an application workshop.

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Arts Learning Grant, Round 2 - Application Workshops

The next deadline for Arts Learning grant applications is Monday, March 4, 2013 with an earliest project start date of May 29, 2013. Grant guidelines and application forms are available on the Arts Learning grant program page on the MRAC website.

MRAC offers workshops designed to help groups prepare MRAC Arts Learning grant applications. Participants become familiar with the program and application forms and learn how to write effective MRAC grant proposals. This is a great opportunity to get questions answered on your project ideas. The Arts Learning workshops will be held:

Tuesday, February 5, 2013, 6:00 P.M. to 8:00 P.M. 
Wednesday, February 6, 2013, 10:00 A.M. to 12:00 P.M.  
Thursday, February 7, 2013, 3:00 P.M. to 5:00 P.M.

The workshops are free, but we ask that you register in advance. To register, click on the linked training title or visit our website The workshops will be held in the MRAC conference room at 2324 University Avenue West, St. Paul, MN 55114. Please contact us if you need special accommodations to attend an application workshop. 
Next Step Fund Application Workshops  

The deadline for 2013 Next Step Fund applications is Monday, March 4, 2013. The guidelines are currently posted on the Next Step Fund program page and you may start the online application at any time.

MRAC offers workshops to help individual artists prepare Next Step Fund grant applications. Participants will become familiar with the program and online application. Because of the volume of applications to this program, MRAC staff does not offer individual consultations for this grant. The workshops are your opportunity to get questions answered.
Please click on the linked workshop date to register.

Saturday, February 2, 10:00 A.M. - 12:00 P.M.
Bloomington Center for the Arts, Black Box Theater
1800 West Old Shakopee Road, Bloomington, MN 55431

Monday, February 4, 1:00 P.M. - 3:00 P.M.
Intermedia Arts
2822 Lyndale Avenue South, Minneapolis, MN 55408

Tuesday, February 5, 3:00 P.M. - 5:00 P.M.
Open Book, Target Performance Hall
1011 Washington Avenue South, Minneapolis, MN 55415

Thursday, February 7, 10:00 A.M. - 12:00 P.M.
Metropolitan Regional Arts Council, Conference Room
2324 University Avenue West, St. Paul, MN 55114

Next Step Fund for individual artists, through generous support from The McKnight Foundation, provides project grants up to $5,000 to professional artists in any discipline for the purpose of career development and artistic achievement. Applicants may be at any stage of their career, but must demonstrate achievement in their artistic field and have a history of public presentation or community contribution.


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Upcoming Arts Management Workshops:

Completing Your 990  
Your IRS Tax Form 990 is also a marketing tool. Many funders/donors now look at organizations' 990 tax information on the Guidestar website and the sooner you file your 990, the sooner potential funders can find it. Steven Anseth, CPA, specializes in working with nonprofit organizations and will walk you through the 990 tax form with both IRS and funders' points of view so you can ensure that your 990 is a positive reflection of your organization. Bring your questions! Two sessions will be offered--one for the 990 EZ form for organizations with annual gross revenue of 50,000 to 200,000 and one for the 990 form for organizations with annual gross revenue of 200,000 or more.

[Steven Anseth] brings this complicated and important topic to a less daunting and manageable level." --past participant.

Form 990 EZ (for organizations with gross receipts between 50,000 and 200,000)
Thursday, January 17, 2:00 to 4:30 P.M.,
Metropolitan Regional Arts Council, 2324 University Ave W., St. Paul, MN 55114

Form 990 (for organizations with gross receipts 200,000 or greater)
Wednesday, February 13, 2:00 to 4:30 P.M.,
Metropolitan Regional Arts Council, 2324 University Ave W., St. Paul, MN 55114

Steven Anseth, CPA is a shareholder and the nonprofit director at Francis & Associates, P.A. where he is responsible for all nonprofit audits, Form 990/990-PF preparation, and nonprofit consulting performed by the firm.

The workshops are free, but we ask that you register in advance. To register, click on the linked training date. Please contact us if you need special accommodations to attend a training event.

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FY 2012 Annual Report 

All of our grant awards from FY 2012 are available in a downloadable document--the MRAC 2012 Annual Report is now online! Thank you to all of our awarded groups whose work helps us meet our mission of increasing access to the arts in 7-county metropolitan area communities. We also thank Contempo Physical Dance, Jantje Visscher, Minnesota Jewish Theatre Company, Minnesota Sunshine Dance, One Voice Mixed Chorus, Twin Cities Women's Choir, Urban Spectrum Theatre Company and zAmya Theater Project for supplying the photos we used in this year's report.

Please note: with more than 400 grants awarded last year, the annual report is a fairly large file and may take a moment to download. If you wish to submit photos from your MRAC-funded events for use in MRAC and RAC Forum materials, please visit


Collecting Photos!

The Metropolitan Regional Arts Council uses photos of arts activities from the past year on our website and in our print materials such as our brochure and annual report. We look for a variety of photos that will show the diversity of our community and the range of arts activities and arts disciplines that MRAC funds. Photos are selected for use based on our needs and photo quality.
For more information and to submit your photos, please visit our photo submission page or contact Mara Miller by email at

Resource Updates (These non-MRAC opportunities are listed at MRAC's discretion. The listing does not indicate an endorsement.)    

The 2013 Rural Arts and Culture Summit will be held on June 5 and 6, 2013 in Morris, MN. Session proposals are requested for topics related to the conference theme "Leveraging Arts and Culture to Build Thriving Communities." For more information visit: Deadline: January 15, 2013.

Call for Artists:
Springboard for the Arts is seeking Minnesota artists, of all disciplines, to participate in Community Supported Art 2013. Selected artists will receive a stipend of 1,000 to create 50 "shares" for the program by June 1, 2013. For more information and frequently asked questions, please visit: Deadline: January 18, 2013.


The National Endowment for the Arts' FY 2014 Creative Writing Fellowships in Prose encourage the production of new work and allow writers the time and means to write. The program offers 25,000 grants to published creative writers. Full grant application information and guidelines are available at Deadline: February 28, 2013.


The Minnesota Theater Alliance is a new organization, collectively founded by Minnesota's theaters, to serve the needs of the more than 400 theaters in the State. Every performance company and venue: big and small; professional, community, academic, for-profit, non-profit, and unincorporated; urban, suburban and Greater Minnesota are welcome and invited to join. For more information visit:


Franconia Sculpture Park is now accepting applications for their 2013 artist opportunities. Located on 20-acres in the scenic St. Croix River Valley, Franconia offers a place where artists live, create, and exhibit three-dimensional artwork all in one location. The opportunities include FSP/Jerome Open & Studio Fellowships and arts related internships. Deadlines vary. More information is available at


Videos of the keynote presentations from the November 28 Arts Learning Xchange: Symposium on Audience Engagement, are available at


The Minnesota State Arts Board's WebGrants system is open for registration. View the How to Register in WebGrants tutorial and then click Login to WebGrants to sign up. To access both the online registration and registration training, visit the Arts Board website at  


The Minnesota Department of Agriculture has created a searchable database of artists who are interested in working with county fairs. To learn more and/or add your information to the database visit:


Springboard for the Arts has created a Google Calendar with upcoming deadlines for Minnesota-based grants that any public user can access. If you're already using Google Calendar, you can subscribe and have deadlines show up on your regular calendar. View it at


Interested in a non-MRAC training opportunity, but not sure that your organization can afford the fee? MRAC offers a training fund grant for management or administrative-related training opportunities that will strengthen your organization. Click on the link for more information on MRAC's Management Training Fund grant.


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MRAC Holiday Hours
Legacy Logo Logos Webpage! MRAC Logo

Trying to find the MRAC and/or Legacy Logo to use in your
publicity materials? Now MRAC has a webpage with downloadable logos and the required acknowledgement language. Visit and help inform your fans about the importance of arts funding!
Central Corridor LRT Construction

The Central Corridor LRT line is under construction along University Avenue. This will cause delays as traffic is re-routed and/or streets are closed. Please allow extra travel time when coming to visit our office.

At times, access to the MRAC parking lots from University may be difficult due to the LRT construction. To get to our back entrance, use Myrtle St.--behind the MRAC building. You can access Myrtle from Raymond or Pelham. Click here to see a map to our back entrance.

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Please forward our e-newsletter to people who may be interested in information about MRAC grant deadlines and awards, workshops, training opportunities, resource updates, and other MRAC news. We do not share our e-mail subscriber list with others.

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 MRAC FY 2012 Summary 

In FY 2012, MRAC received 840 applications and awarded 419 grants totaling 2,738,936 to arts organizations and/or projects including a grant to VSA Minnesota for its regranting program, the ADA Access Improvement Grants for Metro Arts Organizations. These grants were funded by an appropriation from the Minnesota State Legislature with money from the State's general fund, and by the voters of Minnesota, thanks to a legislative appropriation from the arts and cultural heritage fund. MRAC also received 366 applications from individual artists in the Next Step Fund program and awarded 32 grants totaling 155,900 with funds from The McKnight Foundation. MRAC provided 32 arts management training sessions and 26 grant application workshops.

Photos for top ribbon provided by: FOCI Glass, Ballet Minnesota, Thursday Musical ( Virginia Padden), Caponi Arts Park (Photo of CAAM Chinese Dance Theater), Oratorio Society ( Kyrsten Gustafson), Masquers Theatre Company, and T.V. by Girls.

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