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City of Lansing Announces Sense of Place in the Arts Grant Recipients and Arts Impact Project

Monday, December 21, 2015   (0 Comments)
Posted by: Michelle Rahl
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December 16, 2015

Sara Parkinson
(517) 702-3387 x 209


City of Lansing Announces Sense of Place in the Arts Grant Recipients and Arts Impact Project

City of Lansing Awards $120,000 in Funds to Support Creative Placemaking Projects

LANSING, MI —The City of Lansing proudly announced the 2015/2016 Sense of Place in the Arts grants and Arts Impact Project at a press conference held this afternoon at the Lansing Center in downtown Lansing. Announcements included a $75,000 Arts Impact Project as well as grants awarded to six local arts and cultural organizations totaling $45,000. The Sense of Place in the Arts Program is funded through the City of Lansing and administered by the Lansing Economic Area Partnership (LEAP) and the Arts Council of Greater Lansing.

The Arts Impact Project offers Lansing residents an opportunity to activate spaces in the City of Lansing through creative placemaking efforts that are artistic and permanent. This year’s project, which was chosen from more than 15 proposals at an open forum, is an artistic gateway near Downtown Lansing’s Museum Drive. The project’s goal is to connect the Michigan Avenue Corridor to the “Cultural District,” which encompasses Impression 5 Science Center, R.E. Olds Transportation Museum and Riverwalk Theatre.

The Grant Program will fund public programs that additionally enhance the City of Lansing’s creative placemaking efforts. The purpose is to create community-driven placemaking projects that capitalize on Lansing’s assets, inspiration and potential, contributing to a “sense of place” for residents, businesses and visitors. Grant awards ranging from $5,000 - $30,000 have been made available for building a sense of place in the arts, supporting excellence in a wide range of artistic and cultural disciplines.

“Promoting and enhancing arts and culture is part of the City of Lansing’s efforts to attract and retain talent by creating vibrant community spaces and activities – what economic developers call ‘sense of place’,” Mayor Bernero said. “We know that the arts are a vital ingredient in the redevelopment and revitalization of the City of Lansing and region and today’s grant awards will support those efforts.”                                                                                                                                                                                        

The grantees and their projects are as follows:

Lansing Art Gallery will implement The Great Art Giveaway, a collaborative project involving artists, residents, businesses and visitors. The project will activate underutilized public newspaper kiosks, which will be artfully transformed and will distribute free limited-edition artwork by Michigan artists weekly. In conjunction with artwork delivery, the gallery will feature a free artist demonstration event and artwork signing from noon – 1 p.m. on each Wednesday throughout the summer of 2016.

Lansing Symphony Orchestra will present “Symphonic Cinema,” a free, public, orchestral concert in downtown Lansing featuring original film footage created by local filmmakers. LSO will partner with the Capital City Film Festival (CCFF) to present this orchestral concert during the annual Capital City Film Festival.

Michigan Institute for Contemporary Art will present the Great American Fish Rodeo. The anchor event is a major fishing tournament on the Grand River. But this fish rodeo is also a two-day festival -- with professional musicians and multi-cultural groups on stage, an art market and plein air painting, themed creative writing contest, multiple food vendors and beer garden, children's activities, an education tent, boating events and more. It can be fully enjoyed free of charge. And all in downtown Lansing's beautiful Adado Riverfront Park!

Old Town Commercial Association will create and install permanent signage for their self-guided historical tour and wayfinding signs for Old Town businesses and natural and regional attractions.

REACH Studio Art Center will produce “SenseFence,” a permanent 70 foot, interactive sculpture fence which will be community designed and installed along the public alley behind REACH. The installation will be a combination of metal, concrete and wood and include parts that can be moved or manipulated to make sounds or invite sensory play. SenseFence will serve as a visually inviting boarder to REACH’s new courtyard and be easily accessed and enjoyed by neighborhood residents as well as visitors to REO Town.

REO Town Commercial Association will construct a permanent outdoor event space in REO Town with the necessary infrastructure for a variety of events.

“We believe that placemaking has a strong impact on economic development,” said Bob Trezise, President and CEO of LEAP. “As we work to develop and revitalize the City and community through economic development projects, we strive to support arts and culture and placemaking enhancements.”

“Partnering with the City of Lansing and LEAP to administrate these project dollars is representative of the ways that artists, arts organizations and municipalities can collaborate to put creativity at the forefront of economic development,” says Deborah E. Mikula, Arts Council executive director. “These grant projects and the Arts Impact Project work to provide greater Lansing residents with accessible arts experiences and help to build a sense of pride in our communities.”



The Lansing Economic Area Partnership (LEAP) is a coalition of area leaders committed to building a prosperous and vibrant region where business can thrive. To do this, we help entrepreneurs start new businesses, help existing businesses grow, and attract new businesses to the region. For more information about LEAP, please visit      

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