Downtown Program Fund Grant

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The deadline for submissions was noon on February 7, 2024

Downtown Program Fund  2024

Is there an event or artistic installation you would like to present in downtown Eugene? Community-driven events and programming are needed now more than ever to build community, uplift the soul and share the stories and experiences from our increasingly diverse city. The Downtown Program Fund grant, offered by City of Eugene Cultural Services, provides artists and organizations with an opportunity to transform public spaces into arts and culture destinations that support the vibrancy, economic vitality and livability of the cultural heart of Eugene.

Funding of up to $5,000 per project will be awarded to organizations or individuals who wish to produce their own quality programming in publicly accessible spaces in Eugene’s downtown core. These spaces include the Park Blocks, Kesey Square, the Farmers Market Pavilion and Plaza and other public right of ways, such as sidewalks or City streets. Funding can support any artistic or cultural discipline, including visual art, dance, music, theatre, film/video/media, multidisciplinary fields and events.

The 2024 Downtown Program Fund seeks to:

  • Bring visitors, economic vitality, a sense of place and safety to the downtown core through activation of public spaces with arts and culture events and/or installations.
  • Help our regional artists and arts organizations thrive. 
  • Foster a sense of belonging and safety for historically marginalized and underrepresented communities, such as Eugene’s BIPOC and LGBTQIA+ communities, low-income communities, people experiencing disabilities, unhoused individuals, youth and seniors.
  • Promote cultural exchanges through public art and experiences that will generate empathy, understanding, dialogue, wonder and curiosity.

Public Info Sessions

You are invited to attend one or both sessions.

In-person Work Session

Monday, Jan. 29, 4:30-6 p.m.

In-person • People's Collective, 1695 Jefferson St. (use the building entrance on Jefferson St.)

All interested applicants are welcome to attend this in-person, drop-in session where you can talk about your specific project and bring your questions.

Online Info Session

This online info session, led by Senior Downtown Events and Permitting Coordinator David Dickinson, was held on Jan. 18, 2024. In this video, staff answers questions about the City of Eugene's Downtown Program Fund grant and provides tips on navigating the application and budget.

At the 20:06 minute mark, you can see an example of the budget process for a hypothetical event.

  1. Eligibility
  2. Application
  3. Selection Criteria
  4. Expectations & Support
  5. Timeline

Eligibility Requirements

  • The Downtown Program Fund grant is open to all organizations and individuals headquartered/physically residing within Lane County.
  • Organizations or artists with outstanding Downtown Program Fund grants are not eligible to apply until their programs are completed and final reports have been submitted.
  • Previously funded programs, artists and organizations are eligible to reapply. Approximately 30% of funding will be awarded to first-time programs, small-scale programs or programs occurring in areas other than the Farmers Market Pavilion and Plaza.
  • Proposed programming must take place between April 1 and Oct. 31, 2024.
  • Programs must take place in publicly accessible spaces in Eugene’s downtown core. These spaces include the Park Blocks, Kesey Square, the Farmers Market Pavilion and Plaza and other public right of ways, such as sidewalks or City streets.
  • Programs should be made as accessible as possible for community members. If the event is not free to attend, a portion of tickets must be offered for free or on a sliding scale.
  • Applicants must provide a 1:1 cash, in-kind and/or volunteer time match for the project that equals the amount of your Downtown Program Fund grant amount (e.g., if the City awards you $1,000 then you must also contribute at least $1,000 toward your project costs). Your total match amount should consist of one or any combination of the following:
    • Cash: either already secured or additional funds you anticipate raising through sponsorships or other fundraising.
    • In-kind: this includes donated materials and supplies, valued at full retail or rental cost.
    • Volunteer time: value each hour of volunteer time given to the project at the nationally established rate of $31.80 per hour.
    • Please note that you can choose to use in-kind and/or volunteer time as 100% of your match.
  • Applicants may submit proposals for as many as two programs. If two programs are proposed then a complete and separate application is required for each one.
  • City of Eugene employees are not eligible to personally apply for a Downtown Program Fund grant as individuals, but may be involved with an organization or group led by a non-City employee who is applying for a grant.
  • The applicant must be able to obtain liability insurance as a requirement of the Downtown Activity Zone Permit.

Contact Us

Downtown Events & Permit Coordinator

David Dickinson

Ph: 541-682-5542

Cultural Services Mission

City of Eugene Cultural Services provides responsible and catalytic leadership to support the public’s vision for a thriving arts and cultural sector that contributes to the community’s social and economic well-being. The Community and Cultural Affairs section believes the work of the arts creates a stronger, more vibrant and creative community through shared experience that uplift the soul and tell the diversity of stories from our communities.