Colonial Theatre School Inc., the educational arm of the Colonial Theatre, of Westerly, received a $75,000 grant on Jan. 9, from the Rhode Island State Council on the Arts and the Rhode Island Historical & Preservation Commission.
The grant, for capital preservation work, one 38 awards made, is the latest of the State Cultural Facilities Grant and State Preservation Grants. More than $4.6 million in capital improvement grants were awarded to arts, culture, heritage and public historic sites from Woonsocket to Westerly. Together, the projects represent $22,453,724 worth of construction activity, according to a statement released by the two organizations.
Supported by 60.6 percent of Rhode Island voters in 2014, the Creative and Cultural Economy Bonds provided $5 million for State Preservation Grants and $6.5 million for the Cultural Facilities Grants. Administered by the two state agencies, the grant programs require applicants to provide matching funds for their projects. The bonds also included $22 million in support for capital improvements to nine specific Rhode Island arts organizations. This is the third and final year of grant funding for capital improvements to cultural and historic facilities.
“Our cultural infrastructure is critically important to our state’s economy,” said Randall Rosenbaum, executive director of the council on the arts. “These museums, galleries and performance spaces serve Rhode Islanders, attract visitors to our state, and contribute to the local economy in many significant ways.”
“Rhode Island’s cultural and arts communities intersect with our historic community in many places,” said Jeffrey Emidy, acting executive director of the preservation commission. “Historic sites are the homes of large, well-known institutions and small, local organizations. The investment in these sites and institutions pays dividends to the state in many ways.”