Fenton Community Orchestra Awarded State-National Matching-Grant

The Operational Support Grant from the Michigan Council of Arts & Culture Affairs and the National Endowment for the Arts supports orchestra staffing and strategic initiatives.

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Fenton, MI — November 7, 2020

The Fenton Community Orchestra (FCO) announced it has been awarded a $15,000 matching-grant funded by the Michigan Council for Arts and Cultural Affairs (MCACA) and the National Endowment for the Arts (NEA).

“We are grateful for the continued support from MCACA and the NEA,” said FCO board chair Eric Szczepanski. “The Operational Support matching grant allows us to support a part-time staff with professional experience in artistic leadership and nonprofit administration.”

  • Andrew Perkins, Director of Instrumental Music at Andrew G. Schmidt Middle School in Fenton, has served as FCO’s music director and conductor since 2011.
  • Tetyana Clarke, Donor Relations and Stewardship Officer at the University of Michigan-Flint, has served as FCO’s operations manager since 2018.

“It is really wonderful to see so many great grant applications,” MCACA Director Alison Watson said in a press release. “During these tough times, it is a strong affirmation that the field is still vibrant, and the value of our programs is not only recognized but can contribute to ongoing efforts to support vibrancy in our communities throughout the state.”

“I also want to thank our community and Season 11 sponsors, The State Bank and First Choice Heating & Cooling,” said Szczepanski. Applying for grants from MCACA-NEA is made possible by matching donations from our family of donors and local businesses. Your support helps the FCO meet its mission and strategic initiatives.”

The Fenton Community Orchestra. Photo Credit: HSP Imaging Inc.

FCO’s Strategic Priorities

Create Opportunities for participation in a community orchestra. The FCO currently offers a full community orchestra, Simply Strings, a chamber string group, and Prelude String, string lessons for young people in grades 3-8th 

  • Enhance Community Life by making the orchestra experience accessible for all citizens to enjoy. The FCO hosts 3-4 free concerts for the public each season. The FCO also enhances outreach to seniors and youth through performances in local schools and senior centers.  
  • Engage Stakeholders to ensure the sustainability of the organization. Through fundraising and sponsorship opportunities, the FCO actualizes its purpose in providing opportunities for members to play in an orchestra and contribute to the quality of life in our community by supporting an engaging performing arts program. Support FCO at fentonorchestra.org  

About the Fenton Community Orchestra 

Mission: The FCO’s purpose is to provide a place for musicians of all ages to connect through music by providing an educational and entertaining music program for both its members and its audiences. The FCO is a 501c3 non-profit organization and donations are tax-deductible. Learn more at fentonorchestra.org

About Michigan Council for Arts & Cultural Affairs (MCACA) 

MCACA serves to encourage, initiate, and facilitate an enriched artistic, cultural, and creative environment in Michigan.

About the National Endowment for the Arts (NEA) 

Established by Congress in 1965, the NEA is the independent federal agency whose funding and support give Americans the opportunity to participate in the arts, exercise their imaginations, and develop their creative capacities. Through partnerships with state arts agencies, local leaders, other federal agencies, and the philanthropic sector, the NEA supports arts learning, affirms and celebrates America’s rich and diverse cultural heritage, and extends its work to promote equal access to the arts in every community across America. Visit arts.gov to learn more about NEA.