Terre Haute distributes arts grants

Giving to the arts: Terre Haute Mayor Duke Bennett and Sherri Wright, associate director of Arts Illiana, prepare to give out checks as part of the 2019 City of Terre Haute Arts Grant program.Tribune-Star/Howard Greninger

Five arts organizations and five arts projects were among recipients Thursday of funding from the 2019 City of Terre Haute Arts Grant program.

The Linda Luebke Strings Festival was among the arts-related projects, getting help to fund a two-day strings festival for students in grades 5 through 12.

“We have a very small footprint, so getting funding like this is really important to us,” said Sandy Mutchler, executive director of the festival named after an Indiana State University music educator who died in 2013.

“With the number of children under the poverty line and number of families on reduce lunches, we have never turned away a child who wants to come to the festival because their parents are having financial problems,” Mutchler said.

Each arts-related projects received a $1,500 grant, which the organization is to equally match.

“So, organizations with arts projects essentially need a $3,000 project,” said Sherri Wright, associate director of Arts Illiana.

The Terre Haute Community Band was among arts organizations to receive $3,000, which is also matched on a $1 per $1 basis.

James Chesterson, president of the community band, said the grant helps to pay expenses of rent and insurance.

“Every dime is precious to us, and this will help us a great deal,” Chesterson said.

David Bowden, artistic director and conductor of the Terre Haute Symphony Association, said he appreciates the city contributing to the arts.

“It is not always easy to get money like this, we are very, very grateful,” Bowden said, adding the symphony will start its season Sept. 21 with Ronan Tynan, one of the original “Three Irish Tenors.”

Mayor Duke Bennett said arts contribute to the city’s quality of live and “the return on investment from the city is pretty significant. We need to celebrate that and continue to support that.”

The arts organization grant winners ($3,000 each) are Art Spaces Inc., Community Theatre of Terre Haute, Swope Art Museum, Terre Haute Community Band, and Terre Haute Symphony Association.

Art project winners ($1,500 each) are Indiana State University School of the Arts for a “Young Artists Experience” project at Ryves Youth Center in collaboration with the Swope Art Museum; the Linda Luebke Strings Festival; Rose-Hulman Performing Arts Series to support the performance of DINO-LIGHT, a family centered theatrical production; Saint Mary-of-the-Woods College in support of a community choral workshop and performance; and Terre Haute First Church of the Nazarene to support a community concert and outreach program to Franklin and Deming Elementary Schools.

Reporter Howard Greninger can be reached 812-231-4204 or howard.greninger@tribstar.com. Follow onTwitter@TribStarHoward.