Presented by the Oregon Cultural Trust, Oregon Days of Culture celebrates the vibrancy of the arts, heritage, and humanities in Oregon. This year, the eight-day festival will feature more than 500 events across the state; an online photo contest whose winners will receive great cameras, cash prizes, and matching donations to the cultural nonprofit of their choice and the launch of an animated video to raise awareness about Oregon’s unique and powerful cultural tax credit.
The eight-day week showcases everyday culture in every Oregon community. Whether it’s taking in a quilt display at the farmer’s market, reading the latest bestseller at the library, imagining pioneer life at a historic cemetery or listening to opera in a bar, the searchable, interactive website – www.oregondaysofculture.org – makes it easy to participate.
The website opened to the public on September 7 when people began searching for Oregon Days of Culture activities and posting their own events. Posted events include public, such as author readings, exhibitions, performances and screenings; or private, like knitting group meetings and fundraising parties. The searchable database includes free and ticketed events, community gatherings and volunteer opportunities.
In addition to the Days of Culture event calendar and 2011’s “This Is Culture” photo contest, OregonDaysofCulture.org displays proclamations from Oregon politicians (including, already, one issued by Governor John Kitzhaber, MD), information about speaking engagements, and ongoing media coverage through the Trust’s Facebook and Twitter feeds. The site also provides useful tools for cultural nonprofits and advocates, including web graphics, copy-and-paste promotional text and contact information for representatives in the Oregon House and Senate.
All to make it easy for Oregonians to proclaim their support of local culture. October 8 marks the ninth anniversary of Oregon’s unique cultural tax credit and the Cultural Trust’s ninth birthday. That’s fitting, because October is a time of cultural celebrations – National Arts & Humanities Month, National Archives Month, Archaeology Month, Hispanic Heritage Month, and many, many others. October also kicks off the fall fundraising season, not just for the Cultural Trust but also for Oregon’s 1,300 cultural nonprofits.
An innovative public-private fundraising and grantmaking program, the Oregon Cultural Trust relies on donations to create the funds for its annual grants. This year, the Trust announced $1.47 million in grants benefiting 57 cultural nonprofits, 40 county and tribal coalitions and five state cultural partners. Those grants are made possible entirely by donors who gave to the Trust and to any number of Oregon’s 1,300 cultural nonprofits (searchable at http://tinyurl.com/cv9nqo) to earn Oregon’s unique cultural tax credit. The cultural tax credit makes Trust gifts free and gives donors the power to create grants that benefit the cultural nonprofits they already value.
The Cultural Trust invests in community by funding Oregon humanities, arts and heritage. Many cultural nonprofits – libraries, heritage societies, art centers – are the heart of community life and learning. Oregon Days of Culture celebrates the value of Oregon culture and encourages Oregonians to support it by giving. Most event pages at www.oregondaysofculture.org include links to cultural nonprofits’ donations pages.
more donations = more grants benefiting arts, humanities and heritage nonprofits in every Oregon county.