Major Programs

Erie Arts & Culture conducts its main programs to accomplish its goal of nurturing the arts and enriching lives:

  • Combined Arts & Culture Campaign: Erie Arts & Culture has joined with the Erie Downtown Arts & Culture Coalition (EDACC) to conduct the Combined Arts & Culture Campaign. The two organizations are working together to support arts and culture in Erie's downtown and throughout the region. This work is important to the success of the community and is critical to ensuring that arts and culture are alive and accessible to all. Erie Arts & Culture's allocation is 20% of the net proceeds which is combined with the unrestricted income from the Erie Arts Endowment and allocated using a competitive grant process to arts organizations and to community-based arts projects throughout Erie County. The remaining 80% is distributed to EDACC for allocation to its members.

  • Erie Arts Endowment: Erie Arts & Culture is fortunate that income from the Erie Arts Endowment, its endowment of over $3 million, is available for arts programs and projects. The majority of the endowment is dedicated to three grant programs: a music performance fund, arts in education fund and unrestricted funds which are combined with the annual campaign for distribution purposes. The balance is comprised of sub-funds for many local arts organizations that receive income on an annual basis.

  • Arts in Education Program: Erie Arts & Culture became a partner with the PA Council on the Arts in the mid 90s to support their efforts to integrate the arts into the classroom curriculum. Our Arts in Education Partnership encourages artist-teacher partnerships and facilitates artist residencies in schools and social service agencies throughout 11 counties in Northwestern PA. The residencies vary in length from 20 days to a year long residency and spanned a myriad of art forms and ages. The goal of the residencies is not only to bring art into the classroom but also to model arts integration for teachers. Erie Arts & Culture was recently the recipient of a federal Department of Education grant of approximately $1.2 million for this program.

  • PA Partners in the Arts (PPA) program: The PA Partners in the Arts is a statewide grant program that Erie Arts & Culture conducts locally on behalf of the PA Council on the Arts, the state agency for the arts. This program supports a wide variety of local and community arts activities. Grants are available for both arts programs and arts projects. Erie Arts & Culture’s service area for this program is Erie, Crawford, Mercer, Venango and Warren Counties. Approximately $70,000 in funding is distributed annually through this program.

  • Member Services: Erie Arts & Culture seeks to provide its members with opportunities for education and networking, as well as financial support. It serves as a leader and advocate for the arts community. Erie Arts & Culture has broadened its membership scope beyond nonprofit arts organizations to enable any person or organization to join at one of three membership levels.

  • CultureSpark: Erie County is one of only three counties in PA to have conducted cultural planning. Completed in May 2010, CultureSpark, the Erie County Cultural Master Plan, reflects a “big picture” overview of cultural resources, challenges opportunities and recommendations based on research and community dialog. It has 35 recommendations in six focus areas which are being addressed by an Implementation Action Team. Visit the CultureSpark website at