St. Paul Receives $8 Million in Arts Funding


St. Paul Receives $8 Million in Arts Funding

St. Paul was granted $8 million in arts funding this week by the Knight Foundation largely due to its “organic momentum” of cultural growth explosion in the area over the past few years, according to Dennis Scholl, Knight’s vice president of arts giving.

The state capital is “a city that knows and lives the importance of the arts to building a sense of community,” Scholl said in a news statement regarding the commitment to St. Paul’s arts scene.

To start things off, five established organizations — the St. Paul Chamber Orchestra, TU Dance, Penumbra Theatre, the Ordway Center’s Arts Partnership and the artists’ support nonprofit Springboard for the Arts — will divide $3.5 million. The leftover $4.5 million serves winners of “challenge grants” — anyone can apply for these grants over the next three years, according to Scholl.

St. Paul Receives $8 Million in Arts Funding - Maggie Nielsen

There are three rules to follow when submitting an application, which can’t exceed 150 words, for Arts Challenge funds:

— The idea must be about art.

— It must take place in or benefit St. Paul.

— Matching funds must be found to match the grant amount.

Finalists will most likely be announced this summer and winners revealed in the fall, Scholl said.

The Miami-based foundation focuses its philanthropy on cities in which its founders, the Knight family, own or has owned a media outlet. In Minnesota the foundation owns the St. Paul Pioneer Press.

Find Arts Challenge application details at:


Photo of art by: Maggie Nielsen

Header photo via: Google



About Author

Joseph Friedrichs

Joseph Friedrichs is a graduate from the University of Montana School of Journalism. His writing has appeared in The New York Times and dozens of other newspapers throughout Oregon, Colorado and Minnesota. In 2005, Friedrichs was awarded the Robert F. Kennedy award for excellence in journalism. He is also the author of three books, including “It’s Good to Fish Alone,” published in May 2013. He lives in Minneapolis.

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