Two QC non-profits earn Iowa Arts Council grants

Local News

The Iowa Arts Council has announced $81,708 in Virtual Arts Experience Grants have been awarded to 14 nonprofit organizations, including two in Davenport, and one school.

The Quad City Symphony Orchestra received $10,000 to expand digital access to its annual Symphony Day program and four chamber ensemble performances as well as in-house recorded sessions with QCSO teaching artists to use as classroom education engagements.

The River Music Experience received $2,500 to revise and revamp its popular RiverCurrents school music education programming and broaden its impact to more schools throughout the region.

The new grant program was created in response to the COVID-19 pandemic and replaces the Iowa Arts Council’s traditional grants for field trips and other in-school arts experience programs during the current fiscal year. The funding will help Iowans of all ages experience the arts through online learning.

“Arts organizations and educators across the state are developing innovative ways to inspire students and learners of all ages,” Iowa Arts Council Administrator David Schmitz said. “The Iowa Arts Council is delighted to support their ongoing efforts through these grants.”

As a part of the adaptive programming, educators from the Virtual Arts Experience Grant recipients can participate in a skill-building professional-development opportunity developed by Yen Verhoeven of the Qi Learning Research Group. This multi-part training will help educators to be effective in developing online arts learning resources and STEAM (science, technology, engineering, arts and math) related programs.

The Virtual Arts Experience Program is supported with funding appropriated by the Iowa Legislature and the National Endowment for the Arts. The training is being developed through a public-private partnership with the Iowa Arts Council, Bravo Greater Des Moines and Qi Learning Research Group. 

Applications were accepted and grants were awarded in two rounds, in November and December 2020. The Iowa Arts Council is a division of the Iowa Department of Cultural Affairs. Learn more about the Virtual Arts Experience Grant program at

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