Mankato approves $15,000 for social service, music and arts initiatives | Local News


MANKATO — Six local organizations will share $15,000 in grants from the city of Mankato, run by an organization that provides therapy grants for trauma victims.

Mankato City Council this week approved annual grants for social service organizations, art and music groups, and community beautification efforts after a panel of city employees and elected reduced the $21,700 in claims by about a third.

The Trauma Foundation received $4,300 of the $7,500 requested, with the funding earmarked for therapy grants. The organization, based on North Second Street, provides need-based scholarships to people suffering from post-traumatic stress disorder – matching donor funds to military veterans and victims of sexual abuse awaiting therapy .

Three applicants received grants of $2,500.

Terri DeGezelle of Wonder & Awe Photography managed to get $2,500 to place eye-catching photos on electrical boxes around town.

“The project I propose is to transform unsightly and unnoticed objects into a work of art,” DeGezelle wrote in his project summary. “I propose vinyl covering electrical boxes with bright and colorful artwork to enhance Mankato’s environment.”

The Mankato Symphony Orchestra has received half of the $5,000 it requested to support its first concert of the 2022-23 season on October 9 at the Ted Paul Theater on the campus of Minnesota State University.

Key City Bike has received its full $2,500 application for the organization’s “Free Bikes for Kids” program. Key City Bike, 204 E. Vine St., restores and recycles donated bikes, teaches community members about cycling and bike maintenance, and offers a workshop where people can repair their bikes. In 2021, volunteers put more than 900 bikes back on the road, according to the organization’s annual report, some of which were provided to cyclists as far away as Nigeria.

A grant of $2,200, the full amount requested, was awarded to the Mankato Area Community Band, which offers many free outdoor concerts each year. The Sibley Park bandshell hosts six of the summer concerts and another patriotic concert takes place in Lincoln Park.

The final grant of $1,000, half of the requested amount, will go to ProMusica Minnesota “to support bringing leading professional musicians to perform in Mankato as part of the ProMusica Chamber Festival in June at Bethany Lutheran College . The funding will be used for three professional concerts and a recital by young artists.

A request for $5,000 from the Mankato School of Music was denied. The request reportedly brought music programs to toddlers and preschool classes at Cultivate Mankato, a downtown daycare. Council members did not support the grant as it would have been focused on the children of families who enroll in Cultivate Mankato rather than being available to any member of the public.

The total funding of $15,000 corresponds to the amount provided for grants.

The council also allocates funds each year to support community festivals.

Grants totaling nearly $6,000 were approved in January for: Day of the Dead, a Mexican Fall Festival in Old Town ($2,000); Solstice, the Land of Memories park music and food event celebrating the start of summer ($2,000); the Mankato River Ramble, an annual family-oriented tour of area bike paths and routes ($1,000); Love in Mankato, the August Sibley Park-based gathering where families can get free clothes and backpacks full of school supplies while enjoying free food, games and entertainment ($674); and Relay for Life, a July event in Sibley Park to support cancer survivors and caregivers in Blue Earth County ($250).


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