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Advocate for the Arts

The East Central Regional Arts Council advocates for the arts in East Central Minnesota, funding creative projects and programs, providing technical assistance and developing available resources.

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Featured Artists

Jonathan Friesen

Category: Fiction

Jonathan Friesen is a young adult (YA) author, speaker, and youth writing coach from Mora, Minnesota. His first YA novel, JERK, CALIFORNIA, was about a teen coming to terms with Tourette’s Syndrome and was released in September of 2008 (Penguin/Puffin) and he received the ALA Schneider Award.  Since then he has published another 6 novels. He loves writing for the younger crowd and regularly contributes to Clubhouse Magazine and Clubhouse Jr. His 2014 ECRAC McKnight Fellowship project is enabling him to edit a new manuscript and to work on finding his next literary agent.  You can learn more about his writing online at:  Jonathan Friesen's website. ... Read More

Mary Ann Cleary

Category: Painting

Mary Ann Cleary is a 2014 ECRAC McKnight Fellowship artist.  She will use her Fellowship to stud the relationship of color and light in a controlled setting using simple still life setups and painting them.  For more information go to her website at: ... Read More

Recent News


    The East Central Regional Arts Council decided to add a June 1, 2015, grant deadline to the Arts and Cultural Heritage Fund Grant Programs! ...Read More
  • From the Ground Up: Cultivating Creative People and Places - the Rural Arts & Culture Summit 2015

    2015 Rural Arts and Culture Summit to Explore Role of the Arts in the Rural Narrative Minnesota Public Radio’s Dave Peters will facilitate conversation with national leaders and practitioners  The 2015 Rural Arts and Culture Summit will take place Tuesday, June 2 through Thursday, June 4, 2015. This year’s theme, From the Ground Up: Cultivating Creative People and Places will highlight arts-based strategies for rural community and economic development. The Summit will explore the important role of art and culture in shaping the rural narrative, improving quality of life, and influencing migration patterns to small towns. In addition, attendees will learn innovative ways to support artists and arts organizations in their communities, particularly through cross-sector partnerships that help them tap into their community’s cultural assets as they address major challenges or opportunities. Special early bird discounts for registration are available until Wednesday, April 22nd. For more information, including the Summit schedule, cost visit  ...Read More
  • Nonprofits Assistance Fund's Financial Assessment and Planning for Small Arts Organizations on June 20

    If you are with an arts organization, you know that financial assessment and planning is at its best when you have the most relevant information to aid your decision-making. And you need to know how to read and interpret the tools at your disposal to get the most from them. ...Read More
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