The third year of the TopArts Grants program, funded by the City of Topeka and administered by ARTSConnect, was an incredible success. Grants were made available in two categories – public arts & arts access. 16 projects that serve diverse populations across the city of Topeka have been awarded grant funding. View a PDF version of the press release here.

  • Artistic Expressions Healing Arts Initiative @ Colmery-O’Neil VA Medical Center: This program provides mental and physical space for veterans to learn new skills and explore their emotions, histories, and health needs through a creative process. More than 200 veterans with PTSD have completed the program which was created by artist John Sebelius. https://www.facebook.com/artisticexpressionsart/

  • Great Spaces Music & Arts Series @ Grace Cathedral: This secular program features performances from artists from local to international – with diverse formats, instrumentation and style – all performed in the incredible main sanctuary at Grace Cathedral. http://www.greatspaces.org/

  • KC Friends of Alvin Ailey – AileyCamp 2018: AileyCamp is a six-week summer day camp where young people ages 11-14 learn to dance and explore their creativity and develop their self-confidence. Topeka campers will go each day to Kansas City to take dance classes from experienced teaching artists in popular styles such as West African, jazz, ballet, and the Lester Horton technique. Campers also participate in workshops to build leadership and communication skills. https://www.kcfaa.org/aileycamp/

  • Summer Ballet with Kansas Ballet @ Boys & Girls Club: Each summer camp will feature more than 12 hours of instruction per week at four BGC summer camp locations as well as the teen center on SE 10th Ave. Through the theme of Prokofiev's Peter and the Wolf, students will learn fundamental movements and exercises associated with ballet technique, explore musical composition and, enjoy an introduction to the art of choreography. At the end of the week-long camp they will perform in front of their peers at each Boys and Girls Club location. Classes at the Teen Center will focus on physical conditioning through ballet, stress relief through guided breathing/relaxation exercises and an introduction to the art of choreography. http://www.kansasballet.com/community-outreach.html

  • Aaron Douglas Art Fair @ Aaron Douglas Art Park: The ADAF offers the children and families of central Topeka the opportunity to immerse and express themselves in a culturally rich environment. It also provides a venue where local artists of all kinds, particularly diverse and emerging artists, can exhibit their work in a juried setting, many for the first time, in a fun, festive, community-based event. http://www.aarondouglasartfair.com/

  • The Art of Healing @ YWCA Center for Safety & Empowerment: This is an art-focused support group for survivors of interpersonal trauma in the Topeka community. Research has demonstrated that survivors of domestic and sexual violence who may not respond to traditional talk-therapy, often benefit from participating in activities that are non-traditional yet therapeutic, such as exploring and creating art. www.ywcaneks.org

  • Opossum Where Art Thou @ The Topeka Zoo: This very special summer camp opportunity increases access to art coupled with conservation education for all youth, regardless of socioeconomic status. This grant will pay for the artist fees required to run the program. http://topekazoo.org/

  • Works of Heart Artists in Residence @ Family Service & Guidance Center: This project offers clients ages 8-18 living with mental health issues an opportunity to create an art project developed and facilitated by a professional artist from our community. This grant will pay for artist fees required to run the program. www.fsgctopeka.com

  • Topeka Faces Murals by Patrick Rocha: 2-3 murals will be installed on buildings which emphasize the humanity, history and future of Topeka. www.patrickrocha.com

  • ArtReach @ Topeka Rescue Mission: During the 2018 spring and fall semesters, art classes will be held one to two times a week in the USD 501 afterschool program located at the Topeka Rescue Mission. The teachers are NOTO and Topeka artists/educators who are outstanding in their fields. The children will have access to an excellent art education classes in small groups with a low teacher to student ratio and experience a variety of art mediums and teaching techniques. The lessons will specialize in literacy and cultural literacy. www.patty-kahn.squarespace.com

  • Cruzline Contenders @ Scott Dual Language School, Williams Arts & Science Magnet School, and Topeka High School: This percussion-based program increases music literacy, and exposes students to live performances both as performers and audience members. The students take great pride in performing and it is a driving force for them in the music classroom. The younger children have an opportunity to find role models as they perform with CruzLine performers in front of their classroom peers and others. www.cruzlinepercussion.com

  • Topeka Habitat for Humanity Mural: This 30’ x 12’ mural will be painted on the east wall of the Habitat for Humanity building (121 NE Gordon – just north of the Kansas Ave bridge) in NOTO. The mural will be a welcoming landmark to the area and reflect the vibrant arts culture and diversity in North Topeka as well as celebrate themes around neighborhoods, home and community. Once a design has been created by a professional artist, the mural will be painted with assistance from Topeka Habitat homeowners and volunteers. www.topekahabitat.org

  • Postcard from NOTO Mural: This mural will be painted on the north wall of 922 N Kansas Avenue and will represent the NOTO Arts District as an asset to the city of Topeka and its citizens and visitors. The mural will act as a backdrop to attract visitors and provide a photo opportunity as a key piece to the upcoming Redbud Park. The mural will be a collaboration between local artists and volunteers.

  • Sheffel Theatre Clinic and Schooltime Theatre Series @ Topeka Performing Arts Center: This program provides an important cultural supplement to area schools' arts education curriculum by serving nearly 2,400 third grade students annually attend a full day of workshops devoted to different artistic aspects of theater: acting, costuming, make-up, movement and technical staging. www.topekaperformingarts.org/p.aspx?pID=events/youth-education/283&

  • Haunted Hotel: Theater of the Mind @ KTWU: Theater of the Mind is a locally-produced and nationally-broadcast series of radio plays made for television, allowing viewers a firsthand glimpse into the "magic of radio" while offering our local performers access to a national stage. https://ktwu.org/productions/theater-of-the-mind/

  • Senior Outreach Concert Series with Last Minute Folk: Last Minute Folk books musicians for community concerts held at the Jayhawk Theatre. This grant offers support to provide access to performers and musical experiences for senior citizens who are unable to leave their care facilities. www.lastminutefolk.org

  • Brown v. Board Mural Project: ARTSConnect will begin work in May on a mural to be painted across the street from the Brown v. Board National Historic Site. This funding will support artist stipends and supplies. http://artsconnecttopeka.org/bvb