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Union County Awards 38 “HEART” Grants


ELIZABETH, NJ – The Union County Board of Chosen Freeholders has announced that 38 local groups and artists will receive a total of $75,000 through the 2009 Union County HEART Grant Program (History, Education, Arts Reaching Thousands).

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 demonstrates a commitment to the artists and community organizations of Union County. The total funding for 2009 is $75,000.

“The response to the HEART Grant Program has been exciting since its inception,” said Freeholder Chairman Alexander Mirabella. “The recipients are a wonderful mix of creative individuals – composers and writers, historians, painters, photographers, musicians and dancers – plus arts, history and other cultural organizations and civic groups.”

“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 Mirabella 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 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, New Jersey 07202. Telephone: (908) 558-2550. NJ Relay users dial 711, or send E-mail:

Union County HEART Grants Approved 2009 (Total $75,000)

  • Sandra Frank, Westfield: $980, presenting musical performance and education at Cedar Brook senior residence.
  • Diane Kurz, Roselle Park: $1,000, presenting a Broadway Sing-along musical.
  • Connie Pinkowski, Fanwood: $1,000, presenting an after school photography program.
  • Kenny Sack, Summit: $1,000, presenting interactive children’s music and theater.
  • Candace Waller, Fanwood: $700, presenting an African-American dance workshop and performance.
  • Arts Guild of Rahway: $2,500, presenting an arts education program for pre-K students.
  • Borough of Fanwood: $1,000, presenting the Fanwood Cultural Arts performance series.
  • Borough of New Providence Community Activities: $1,000, providing live music at the New Providence Music & Art Street Festival.
  • Brand New Day, Elizabeth: $2,500, presenting traditional Caribbean music and dance workshops.
  • Casa of Union County, Elizabeth: $2,500, presenting “Speaking Truth through Art” workshops for counselors.
  • Catholic Charities/Engel’s Center, Cranford: $1,000, presenting visual art workshops for senior citizens.
  • City of Rahway: $2,000, hire musicians for “First Thursday” Arts District performances.
  • Continuo Arts Foundation, Westfield: $2,500, presenting choral master classes and performance for students and adults.
  • Cranford Senior Housing Board, Cranford: $2,500, providing concerts for Cranford Senior Housing residents.
  • Early Childhood Advisory Council, Scotch Plains: $2,500, assisting families of young children to understand cognitive development.
  • Elizabeth Avenue Partnership, Elizabeth: $2,000, presenting dance, music and cultural events during Hispanic Heritage Month.
  • Garden Club of Cranford: $2,500, create educational permanent water garden.
  • Groundwork Elizabeth: $2,500, presenting historic bicycle tour “Elizabeth Firsts.”
  • Hanson Park Conservancy, Cranford: $1,000, present educational nature programs.
  • Jewish Family Service of Union County, Elizabeth: $2,500, presenting free knitting and basket-making classes to seniors.
  • Kenilworth Historical Society, Kenilworth: $1,000, hire historic interpreter for “Four Centuries in a Weekend” and obtain a wireless microphone system.
  • Literacy Volunteers of Union County, Plainfield: $2,500, supporting a literary publication of student work.
  • Merchants & Drovers Tavern Museum Association, Rahway: $2,500, provide docents with professionally replicated period costumes.
  • Metro Rhythm Chorus, Clark: $2,500, presenting four-part a cappella concerts.
  • Mystic Vision Players, Linden: $2,500, presenting historic American music in four performances.
  • National Council of Jewish Women, U.C. Section, Elizabeth: $2,000, providing two intergenerational big band dance programs.
  • New Jersey Intergenerational Orchestra, Berkeley Heights: $2,000, presenting free Young People’s Concert.
  • Occupational Center of U.C., Roselle: $2,500, presenting an arts and education program for people with disabilities.
  • Old First Historic Trust, Elizabeth: $2,500, presenting historic re-enactment of Abraham Lincoln’s 100th birthday celebration.
  • Reeves-Reed Arboretum, Summit: $2,500, digitize and store historic photos and documents.
  • Second Street Youth Center Foundation, Plainfield: $1,000, presenting a computer graphics program for young children.
  • The Theater Project/UCC, Cranford: $2,250, presenting “A Few Steps in a Stranger’s Shoes” to promote understanding between students.
  • Union Township Community Action Organization, Inc.: $2,500, presenting Senior Choral performances in nursing homes.
  • Visual Arts Center of New Jersey, Summit: $2,500, presenting a visual arts program for older adults.
  • Westfield Public School District: $2,500, digitize and preserve 200 years of historic archives.
  • Westfield Symphony Orchestra: $2,500, presenting “A Young Person’s Guide to the Orchestra” concert.
  • Women in Conversation, Plainfield: $2,500, sponsoring monthly reading groups for school children and senior citizens.
  • Art in the Garden, through the Union County Office of Cultural & Heritage Affairs, Elizabeth: $1,570, presenting individual and group performances during Arts & Humanities Month.