Apr. 21—NORTH ANDOVER — The town’s Cultural Council last week handed out $11,253 in grants to 18 groups and individuals who perform in or are based in the community.
Anna Choi, chairwoman of the council, said the grants are for a variety of organizations and purposes.
For example, Mouli Pal, a classically trained dancer from Wilmington, received $150 because she performs locally, including dancing at the Solstice Stones at the Ward Reservation located partly in North Andover.
Dr. “The Machine” Jesse Green received a grant of $250 because he has performed locally, as well, including in front of the North Andover Middle School where he used a chainsaw to make a sculpture.
Grants will support a wide range of grassroots activities, such as concerts, exhibitions, radio and video productions, field trips for schoolchildren, after-school youth programs, writing workshops, historical preservation efforts, lectures, First Night celebrations, nature and science education programs for families, and town festivals.
Nearly half of LCC funds support educational activities for young people.
The North Andover Cultural Council is part of a network of 329 local cultural councils serving all 351 cities and towns in the state. The program is the largest grassroots cultural funding network in the nation, supporting thousands of community-based projects in the arts, sciences, and humanities every year. The state Legislature provides an annual appropriation to the Massachusetts Cultural Council, a state agency, which then allocates funds to each community.
Decisions about what to support are made at the community level by a board of municipally appointed volunteers. The members of the North Andover Cultural Council are Choi, Brian Middleton-Cox, Stephanie Aude, Wendy Smith and Brooke Paige.
“It’s the local volunteers who really make this system work,” said Janice Martin Phillips, a member of the North Andover Select Board. “They make limited resources go as far as possible, and they make the tough decisions about which projects should be supported. Thanks to them, the arts, sciences, and humanities are part of people’s everyday lives in every community across the state.”
Statewide, more than $3.3 million will be distributed by local cultural councils in 2021.
This year’s grants in North Andover go to:
Mouli Pal, $150; Northeast School of Ballet, $500; North Andover Youth & Recreation Services, $1,000; New England Classical Singers, $400; Museum of Printing, $200; Spotlight Playhouse, $300; North Andover Merchants Association, $1,794; North Andover Schools Enrichment Council, $1,000; Atkinson Elementary School, $500; North Andover High School Music Department, $1,900; Denise Doucette, $500; Dr. “The Machine” Jesse Green, $250; North Andover School District, $800; Andover Choral Society, $300; three grants for the North Andover Historical Society totaling $1,459; MUSIC Dance.edu, $200.
The North Andover Cultural Council will seek applications again in the fall.
For guidelines and complete information on the North Andover Cultural Council, contact Anna S. Choi at [email protected] Applications and more information about the Local Cultural Council Program are available online at www.mass-culture.org. Applications are due in October, date to be determined.