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MAC Iditarod

January 11, 2017

Starting next week

screen-shot-2017-01-10-at-1-48-32-pmAUGUSTA, ME, January 10, 2017—On January 17, 2017, the Maine Arts Commission will launch its 2017 Arts Iditarod, a long and undoubtedly snowy information and listening tour from York to Winter Harbor to Presque Isle. (An ambitious tour that will encompass more than the 1,160 miles of Alaska’s Iditarod National Historic Trail!) The Portland Public Library event is the first of seven such regional meetings, free and open to the public, that the Commission will host between January 17 and February 21, 2017. The full schedule is available on our Public Events page. Each gathering will include five different sessions designed to engage artists, arts organizations, educators, policy makers, and community developers in advancing the arts in Maine and Maine communities through the arts. Refreshments will be served. The launch of the tour coincides with the January 17 opening of the Commission’s fiscal year 2018 grant applications and guidelines in its online Grants Management System.

“An important part of the Commission’s mission is to provide professional development and information to the field,” said Julie Richard, the Commission’s Executive Director. “The Arts Iditarod gives us the opportunity to connect with our constituents in person: to hear what’s important to them and to engage them in discussions that are critical to the arts statewide and beyond.”

screen-shot-2017-01-10-at-1-49-27-pmSession topics include:

Follow the Money: Best practices, tips, and tricks for accessing the Maine Arts Commission’s current grants programs.

Data: the Other Half of Your Story: Data collection made fun and interesting! Learn how to capture and incorporate data in your storytelling to strengthen your arts marketing and advocacy.

Creativity Connects: a dialogue around the ways artistic creativity benefits other fields such as business, STEM education and research, the environment, and tourism; as well as one which investigates important models of artists’ practice, locating opportunities for impact and understanding how the current ecosystem of support needs to change to reflect changing practices. Creativity Connects, launched by the National Endowment for the Arts in 2015, is a multipronged effort to show how arts-based creativity intersects with and enriches other facets of life in the U.S. Additional resources can be found at arts.gov and Creativz.us.

Cultural Equity for Maine: How do we ensure full participation in the arts for all Mainers? How can we employ the arts to promote full participation as citizens in Maine’s cultural and civic communities? What do we need to do to ensure a place at the table for all in terms of sharing funding streams and framing the future of the arts?

Arts Education Census: The Commission’s 2016 Arts Education Census achieved 95% participation from the state’s public schools; learn about the results and possible actions arising from the data.

These events are free and open to the public: registration at http://mainearts.eventbrite.com/?s=73025100 is suggested in case weather necessitates schedule changes. The launch of the tour on January 17 coincides with the opening of the Commission’s fiscal year 2018 grant applications and guidelines in its online Grants Management System.

The Commission’s five-year cultural strategic plan, adopted in 2015, and information regarding programs and Iditarod location and agenda details are available at mainearts.com. You can also register at the website to review the new year’s grant program guidelines and open applications; to receive the Commission’s monthly e-newsletters, containing information about grant and other opportunities and awards; and to follow the Commission on social media @MaineArts #MaineArts.

The Maine Arts Commission supports artists, art organizations, educators, policy makers, and community developers in advancing the arts in Maine. For more than 50 years the Commission has encouraged and stimulated public interest and participation in the cultural heritage and cultural programs of our state; has worked to expand the state’s cultural resources; and encouraged and assisted freedom of artistic expression for the well-being of the arts, to meet the needs and aspirations of persons in all parts of the state. Additional information is available at mainearts.com.

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