FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: August 26, 2013
Cultural & Heritage Office: 908-558-2550
E-mail: culturalinfo@ucnj.org
Media Contact Only: Tom Plante, 908-527-4746

Union County Awards 49 “HEART” Grants


ELIZABETH, NJ – The Union County Board of Chosen Freeholders announces that 49 artists, historians and local non-profit organizations will receive funding through the 2013 Union County HEART (History, Education, Arts Reaching Thousands) Grant Program.

Recognizing the importance of culture and the arts to our economy and quality of life, the Union County Freeholders established the HEART Grant Program in 1998. This innovative program supports projects related to history, the arts and humanities, and it demonstrates a commitment to the artists and community organizations of Union County. Total funding for this year’s grants is $75,000.

“The recipients of HEART Grants are a wonderful mix of creative individuals – composers and writers, historians, visual artists, musicians and dancers – plus arts, history and other cultural organizations and civic groups,” said Freeholder Chairman Linda Carter. “The response to the program has been exciting ever since its inception.”

“The services provided by these artists, scholars and organizations directly benefit the residents of our county and increase appreciation for the arts, our history, and the humanities,” Freeholder Carter added. “These cultural assets are a vital part of community life, well being, economic development and cultural heritage tourism in Union County.”

Artists, educators, civic and historical non-profit organizations that want information about next year’s HEART Grant Program can contact the Union County Office of Cultural and Heritage Affairs, 633 Pearl Street, Elizabeth, NJ 07202. Telephone: (908) 558-2550. NJ Relay users dial 711, or send E-mail to: culturalinfo@ucnj.org


Union County HEART Grants Awarded 2013 (Total $75,000)

  • Brian Beste, Fanwood, $750, presenting art-creating and history workshops;
  • Candace Waller, Fanwood, $700, presenting dance programs and workshops;
  • Danielle Linares Hale, Fanwood, $750, presenting a community arts festival;
  • Kenneth Sack, Summit, $600, presenting “Write and Perform a Song” workshops at Winfield School;
  • Lesl Harker, New Providence, $750,  presenting a traditional Irish music concert;
  • Raymond W. Blanks, Rahway, $600,  providing photography classes for Rahway youth;
  • Valerie Graham, Roselle, $700,  presenting free crafts workshops for children & seniors;
  • Arts Guild New Jersey, Rahway, $1,800, presenting Pre-K arts education in Rahway schools;
  • Borough of Fanwood, $1,875, presenting a Fanwood Cultural Arts Performance Series;
  • Borough of New Providence Community Activities, $1,000, presenting “Words” community poetry collage project;
  • Borough of Roselle Park, Casano Community Center, $750, presenting free concert “Rhythms of the World;”
  • Brand New Day, Elizabeth, $2,000, presenting traditional Caribbean music and dance workshops;
  • Carolyn Dorfman Dance Company, Union, $1,600, presenting a performance with UCAPA at the Vo-Tech black box theater;
  • CASA of Union County, Elizabeth, $2,000, presenting arts workshops for child advocates;
  • Center for Hope Hospice & Palliative Care, Scotch Plains, $1,875, providing musical performances for hospice residents;
  • Christ Fellowship, Elizabeth, $750, presenting Puerto Rican Folklore Festival;
  • Clark Historical Society, Clark, $1,500, presenting early American life demonstrators at Four Centuries in a Weekend;
  • Cranford Housing Board, Cranford, $1,000, presenting “Three Tenors” concert for senior housing residents;
  • duCret School of Art, Plainfield, $750, presenting a performing arts program for children grades K-12;
  • Dreamcatcher Repertory Theatre, Summit, $1,500, producing 2 improv comedy shows;
  • Elizabeth Avenue Partnership, Elizabeth, $1,875, presenting dance and music cultural events during Hispanic Heritage Month;
  • First Presbyterian Church, Elizabeth, $1,000, providing an audio tour of “Elizabeth at the Crossroads;”
  • Groundwork Elizabeth, Inc., $1,600, presenting 11th annual bicycle Tour de Elizabeth;
  • Hillside Public Library, $1,875, presenting free arts and cultural workshops for children;
  • Hillside Victory Community Garden Club, $1,950, presenting Harvest Fest 2013;
  • Institute of Music for Children, Elizabeth, $2,250, presenting Friday Teen Arts Nights;
  • Josephine’s Place, Elizabeth, $2,500, presenting poetry and music recording workshops for immigrant women;
  • Kenilworth Historical Society, Kenilworth, $1,125, presenting educational exhibits;
  • Language & Enrichment Center Inc., Scotch Plains, $1,000, presenting performances by preschool children of Italian winter songs;
  • Mother Seton Regional High School, Clark, $1,000, producing a musical involving Union County children;
  • Music for All Seasons, Scotch Plains, $2,300, presenting music programs for Union County Juvenile Detention Center;
  • National Council of Jewish Women, U.C. Section, Elizabeth, $1,875, providing two intergenerational programs: a big band swing dance and a staged play reading;
  • New Jersey Intergenerational Orchestra, Berkeley Heights, $1,875, presenting a community concert;
  • Occupational Center of Union County, Roselle, $2,000, presenting art education classes for people with disabilities;
  • Old First Historic Trust, Elizabeth, $1,875, hiring historian to research African American burial grounds;
  • Plainfield Community Outreach, Inc, $1,875, presenting after-school theater program for Cedarbrook K-8;
  • Plainfield Division of Parks and Recreation, $1,700, presenting a historical Kwanza celebration with speakers, music and dance;
  • Premiere Stages at Kean University, Union, $1,875, presenting free public play readings;
  • Rahway Community Action Organization, $1,875, presenting African American history programs to high school students;
  • Raritan Valley Chapter the Links, Plainfield, $1,500, presenting a free concert;
  • Restore Ministries, Inc., Elizabeth, $2,250, providing “Union County Arts Tour” for youth literary and arts study;
  • Temple Beth O’r/Beth Torah, Clark, $1,000, presenting free concert by Zalmen Mlotek;
  • The Theater Project, Union, $2,000, presenting “A Few Steps in a Stranger’s Shoes” to promote understanding among students;
  • Union Township Community Action Organization, Inc., $1,700, presenting Senior Choral performances in nursing homes;
  • United Youth of NJ, Elizabeth, $2,000, presenting a play about Frederick Douglas;
  • Visual Arts Center of NJ, Summit, $2,000, presenting a visual arts program for adults;
  • Westfield Symphony Orchestra, $1,500, presenting concert “Home for the Holidays;”
  • Women in Conversation, Plainfield, $2,500, presenting reading groups for students and seniors;
  • YM-YWHA of Union County, Union, $1,875, presenting a “Celebration of Jewish Music” performance series.