The Arts and Education Council has awarded twelve organizations a combined total of $50,000 through the Bayer Fund Rural Community Arts Program.

Since 2007, Bayer Fund Rural Community Arts Program has invested more than $250,000 in our region to provide access to the arts for people living in the rural communities surrounding St. Louis.

“The 2021-2022 Bayer Fund Rural Community Arts Program grantees understand how the arts can positively impact community members’ quality of life. The Arts and Education Council is proud to support these arts organizations that are committed to providing meaningful arts experiences for community members of all ages,” said Jessireé Jenkins, Arts and Education Council manager of grants and programs. “We’re grateful for our partnership with Bayer Fund that allows us to support arts and arts education programs that make our region more vibrant.”

The organizations (in alphabetical order) that have been awarded Bayer Fund Rural Community Arts Program grants are:

  • Art Works On Main Gallery (Owensville, Mo.) promotes the arts through exhibits, education, community outreach programs and events including the annual plein air art event in rural Gasconade County.
  • Arts Rolla (Rolla, Mo.) brings art and communities together through visual, literary and performing arts. Their 2021 exhibition will highlight works of art created by Dan Woodward who paints people and places of historical and cultural significance from the 20th and 21st centuries.
  • The Hettenhausen Center for the Arts at McKendree University (Lebanon, Ill.) is Southern Illinois’s premier performing arts venue, presenting world class dance, drama, classical music and jazz.
  • Highland Arts Council (Highland, Ill.) supports and encourages artists by holding classes, workshops and camps. They also facilitate exhibits, performances and other events like the Annual Art in the Park event every October, where approximately 70 artists sell their art.
  • Macoupin Art Collective (Staunton, Ill.) provides art opportunities through workshops, classes, gallery exhibitions, free community events, material disbursement and professional development. Their new ARTreach program will address the lack of art instruction, materials and opportunities for communities in Macoupin County and the surrounding Metro East area.
  • Jacoby Arts Center (Alton, Ill.) offers local performing artists a creative outlet through live theatre, music, comedy, dance performances and other events. Additionally, Jacoby Arts Center is the only local gallery that provides opportunities for visual artists to gain experience through juried exhibitions and a retail outlet where they can sell their work.
  • Mississippi Valley Art Guild (Chester, Ill.) furthers appreciation of the arts by offering support, training and fellowship for artists of all ages, abilities and mediums. Through their Teen Art Guild, Mississippi Valley will provide resources including artist quality art supplies for youth ages 10-18 to teach art to multi-generational artists including their peers.
  • Montgomery Arts Council (Montgomery, Mo.) promotes creativity and access to all the arts in Montgomery County through their art gallery, classes, Summer Art Camp, workshops, seminars and events such as Open Studio Thursday Nights and Music in the Park.
  • Sainte Genevieve Art Guild (Ste. Genevieve, Mo.) encourages interest in the fine arts across their community. Their upcoming programs include arts education workshops for artists of all ages at various skill levels, arts exhibitions with a focus on cross-cultural understanding and public music and theater performances.
    • Mississippi Valley Art Guild and Sainte Genevieve Art Guild will collaborate on youth programming to engage a broader group of young people in the arts.
  • Raintree Arts Council (Clarksville, Mo.) serves the Pike and Lincoln counties in Northeast Missouri. Raintree offers programming in theatre, music, visual arts and literature and also provides educational programs in local schools.
  • Steelville Arts Council (Steelville, Mo.) offers artists a place of natural beauty and inspiration for both visual and per­forming artists and promotes the arts in their community, creating a connection between artists and audiences to enrich the quality of life for all. Their Plein Air event is a weeklong experience with up to 50 participating artists and includes opportunities for youth to learn plein air painting methods.
  • Warren County Fine Arts Council (Wright City, Mo.) supports arts education programs including music, theater, literature, dance and fine arts in Warren County schools and in public community spaces such as their Concerts in the Park program.

“Throughout the years, the grants given through Bayer Fund have helped strengthen our communities across the United States,” said Al Mitchell, President of Bayer Fund. “We’re proud to be able to support the Arts and Education Council to provide art programs and cultural performances to families and children in the counties and rural communities surrounding the St. Louis metropolitan area.”

Grant applications were reviewed based on mission, community need, potential impact, artistic quality and fiscal responsibility by a volunteer panel of the Grants and Programs Committee of the Arts and Education Council’s Board of Directors.

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