Category Archives: Resources

Get on the Art Train!

Get on the Art-Train! Created in partnership with the Center for Performance and Civic Practice, Art-Train is a new national training and technical assistance program to bring together artists and creative workers with municipalities, agencies, and organizations to create culture-based collaborations.

With a track for artists and a track for agencies, Art-Train helps organizations use American Rescue Plan and American Jobs Plan funding to support locally-rooted, culture-based collaborations for a creative and equitable recovery, and artists get ready to work in these kinds of programs. Participants attend an initial synchronous virtual training session, and then receive ongoing technical assistance through bi-weekly drop-in coaching and networking sessions with Art-Train staff, experts and an expanding network of peers.

Training sessions start on May 11 for agencies and organizations, and on May 18 for artists and creative workers. Attend a session and plan for new projects!

WHAT IS ART-TRAIN? (Download a PDF of the Program Description)
Art-Train, housed at Springboard for the Arts, is a partnership with Center for Performance and Civic Practice. It is a virtual technical assistance program for artists, municipal agencies, community non-profits, and arts councils in communities of all sizes across the nation. 
Art-Train will equip you with tools to design and support cross-sector, equity-centered, locally-rooted and culture-based collaborations in communities of all sizes. Art-Train brings together both sides of the creative equation with two parallel tracks: 
– Artist Track: artists get ready to work in collaboration with agencies, non-profits, and arts councils on critical community issues. 
– Agency track: government agencies, non-profits, and arts councils get ready to work with local artists to support creative workforce development, economic growth, and authentically address community needs and concerns such as public health, housing and civic engagement.
Participants attend an initial synchronous virtual training session, and then receive ongoing technical assistance through bi-weekly drop-in coaching and networking sessions with Art-Train staff, experts and an expanding network of peers. 
Artists are creative people from all disciplines and experiences, from culture bearers and craft artists to classically trained, from those who receive huge commissions and whose work is collected by museums, to those who sing in community choir, weave stories, or carve spoons. Artists are a natural resource and an asset – they are in every place, on every block, in every apartment building, and every rural community.
– ALL PARTICIPANTS will gain skills to frame and translate their goals into formats that will be supported by multiple funding sources. All will have access to ongoing technical assistance, a resource library, additional learning from experts and peers, and an expanding network of practitioners across the country. 
– ARTISTS will build on their existing skills to collaborate in and with their communities. They will deepen their own practices around creative problem solving, equitable community engagement, and creating arts-based strategies to address recovery efforts, from public health to local economies.
– AGENCIES and ORGANIZATIONS will learn customizable models and best practices to design and implement local-artist centered programs that address community challenges through ethical, culturally competent and responsive public engagement with more equitable, authentic, culturally-relevant results. 
Art-Train is here to help you access resources and develop strategies that will help you reach and engage more people, increase community relevance and connection and find creative ways to be more effective. Artists bring not only their ability to make, to engage across sectors and people, but also to use critical processes to reconnect, reimagine and rebuild in their own places. 
Through Art-Train, we can connect local needs, local residents, local leaders and local artists to collectively build an equitable economic recovery and a healthier future for our communities, through programming that supports:
– Authentic, community-based solutions to sector challenges: public health, food security, housing, public safety, education, transportation, etc.
– Enhanced community narrative, identity, pride and empowerment.
– Increased social capital and diversified networks that contribute to community recovery and resilience.
– Increased community and economic vitality that supports people and places.

– Artists Respond: Combating Social Isolation (Springboard for the Arts):
– International Downtown Association creative partnerships (Springboard for the Arts):
– Artists on Main (Rethos and Springboard for the Arts)
– Art of Recovery (Santa Monica Cultural Affairs):
– Creative Corps (San Francisco):
– Learning Lab (Metro Arts Nashville):
– Timeslips:
Sign up today! For more info click here.

Rural Regenerator Fellowship — A cohort to support and connect creative rural Leaders. Apply now!

Springboard for the Arts has launched the Rural Regenerator Fellowship, a cohort to support and connect creative rural leaders in the Upper Midwest.

With this new Rural Regenerator Fellowship, 10 Fellows will be selected from communities of 50,000 people or fewer across the Upper Midwest (Minnesota, North and South Dakota, Wisconsin, Michigan, Iowa, Illinois and the Native Nations that serve those geographies). Fellows will be selected based on their demonstrated commitment to rural arts-based community development, their interest in sharing their own experiences and learning around this work with other fellows, and their desire to grow, adapt, or launch new work that will strengthen their community. Fellows will receive $10,000 in flexible funds to support their existing work and/or to launch a new project in their community.

Applications for the Rural Regenerator Fellowship are due by June 11, 2021, with information sessions on April 30 and May 21. Find out more and see the application here:

Fellows will be selected based on their demonstrated commitment to rural arts-based community development, their interest in sharing their own experiences and learning around this work with other fellows, and their desire to grow, adapt, or launch new work that will strengthen their community. People who are Black, Indigenous, Native, People of Color, LGBTQIA+, women and gender non-binary people, and/or people with disabilities are strongly encouraged to apply, and will be prioritized in the selection process.

Rural Regenerators see wild possibilities when communities are most stuck, and they use art, culture and creativity to help reframe challenges and opportunities, build relationships, repair historic harms, and dream big about a future that works better for everyone. Please share, spread the word, and apply!

Minnesota State Arts Board Offers Creative Support for Individuals Grant Program — Apply now!

The Arts Board has posted grant program guidelines and application forms for the FY 2022 Creative Support for Individuals program.

The program offers flexible support for Minnesota artists and culture bearers.The coronavirus pandemic has made it difficult for artists and culture bearers to produce work, sustain their creative practices, and generate income. Creative Support grants can be used by artists and culture bearers to adapt to their changing environment; continue to make work or try new ways to make and share their work; stay connected to audiences, participants, students, or communities that participate in their arts programming; and ensure that Minnesota residents and communities will continue to have access and connection to the arts.

There will be two application deadlines—one on June 4, 2021, and another on August 6, 2021. This is a statewide program. Anyone who meets the eligibility requirements is welcome to apply. Artists and culture bearers who received a grant from the Arts Board or a regional arts council in fiscal years 2015-2021 are eligible to apply. So too are artists and culture bearers who have not been previous grantees but are in one or more of the following groups:
— Individuals who live outside the seven-county metropolitan area (the metro area includes Anoka, Carver, Dakota, Hennepin, Ramsey, Scott, and Washington counties);
— Individuals who identify as indigenous or a person of color;
— Individuals who have a disability.
Please visit the Creative Support for Individuals Web page to find the complete Program Overview and Application Instructions; other details about the program; and a free, recorded information webinar. 

Grant Funding for Public Art Projects — Deadline is June 1

New this year!

Deadline to apply is June 1 for Arts Legacy Grants and Arts Project Grants with an emphasis on

Public Art Projects

The NWMAC has created a special category this year for Arts Legacy Grants and Arts Project Grants for public art projects. The deadline to apply is June 1.

To start your application, login at our Grants Portal here.

The Arts Legacy Grants is a main category for funding artistic activity within the seven-county service region. Funding for the grants comes from the Minnesota State Legislature through the Arts and Cultural Heritage Fund of the Clean Water, Land and Legacy Amendment. These grants are a maximum of $10,000 with a required cash match.    

Arts Project Grants are used primarily for small budget arts projects. These grants are a maximum of $3,000 with a required cash match. These grants have substantially less reporting requirements than Legacy grants.

The deadline for this special category is June 1.

You absolutely must reside in our service region in northwestern Minnesota. In the case of college students, your school or your home mailing address must be in our region.  Our region covers the Minnesota counties of Kittson, Marshall, Norman, Pennington, Polk, Red Lake, and Roseau.

Applications funded through these two very important grant opportunities include public art projects that improve the quality of life of people in our communities.

Creating art in public spaces requires a different skill set than creating art for private commissions. It requires the artist to work with city, the community, or the neighborhood in collaboration to determine subject matter, look, and timeline. The artist needs to recognize and adhere to zoning and building codes. The artist also needs to be transparent at times with a whole committee of people related to design and installation and lighting requirements for public safety. Often it requires working at a large scale and understanding whether your art can handle our extreme weather. It can be very rewarding and fun! 

Please consider applying and spread the word!

Poetry Home Repair Online Class March 15- May 21

Although Ted Kooser’s book, The Poetry Home Repair Manual states on the cover that it is “practical advice for beginning poets,” the book has great lessons for poets at any level of experience. In this course, you will work through Kooser’s book chapter-by-chapter, gleaning the valuable lessons he has to impart, and practicing incorporating some of his “practical advice” into our own poems. Each week, there will be a handful of discussion questions drawn from that week’s assigned chapter, then a poem prompt related to that week’s topics. Each participant will come away from the class with a truckload of new ideas, new tools in their poetry toolbox, 10 new poem drafts and the feedback received on them from participants and instructor LouAnn Muhm to guide revision, and a new writing community with whom to share triumphs and struggles.

Poetry Home Repair (10 weeks): 
March 15-May 21,2021— $350

Registration deadlines: March 10. Ten spots available, first-come, first served. To register or for more information, email or visit

In this class, you will be following along in The Poetry Home Repair Manual by Ted Kooser. It is necessary that you have the book (print or digital) in order to take the class.

Topics covered in this 10-week course include:

  • Week 1–Chapter 1:  Poet’s Job Description
  • Week 2–Chapters 2-3: Writing for Others and First Impressions
  • Week 3–Chapters 4-5: Don’t Worry About the Rules, Rhyming, and Prose Poems
  • Week 4–Chapter 6: Writing About Feelings
  • Week 5–Chapter 7: Can You Read Your Poem Through Your Poem?
  • Week 6–Chapter 8: Writing from Memory
  • Week 7–Chapter 9: Working with Detail
  • Week 8–Chapter 10: Controlling Effects Through Careful Choices
  • Week 9–Chapter 11: Fine tuning Similes and Metaphors
  • Week 10–Chapter 12: Relax and Wait