City of Charlotte awards $1.2M in Opportunity Fund grants

CHARLOTTE – The City of Charlotte Arts and Culture Advisory Board is distributing nearly $1.2 million to artists as well as arts and cultural groups via Opportunity Fund grants.

This brings the total of the Opportunity Fund’s investments to more than $2.7 million in the last two years.

The Opportunity Fund offers support for near-term projects and initiatives that align with the recently approved Charlotte Arts and Culture Plan. 

“These grants signify the first action to implement the Charlotte Arts and Culture Plan, investing over $1 million while advancing five priorities of the plan,” said Priya Sircar, the city’s arts and culture officer. “It is inspiring to see the creativity and ambition that fuels our arts and culture ecosystem which is so critical to the vibrancy and character of our city and region. The volume and variety of proposals demonstrate the breadth of incredible work being done around the Queen City.”

The 2024 grantees, their projects and the amount awarded are as follows: 

• Arts+, Arts+ on The Plaza, $40,000

• BraveWorks, Arts Skill Development and Workforce Development For Underserved Women, $40,000

• Carla Aaron-Lopez, 15 TO FAME: A Comedy Showcase for Local Legends, $25,000

• Charlotte Gaymers Network, Project Saturn, $24,000

• Charlotte Pride Band, Better Access Through Technology, $33,028.50

• Cine Casual, Charlotte Latino Film Festival (2nd Edition), $20,000

• Dammit Wesley, The Hunnid Dollar Art Fair, $25,000

• Depeña Studio, “Remote,” $40,000

• Elizabeth Palmisano, Charlotte Professional Teaching Artist Certification Program, $35,800

• Gay Men’s Chorus of Charlotte Inc., ActOUT Theater Company, $40,000

• Goodyear Arts, Goodyear Arts Space Development, $30,000

• InReach. Troupe 801, $29,390

• Lions Services Inc., Charlotte Braille Trail, $40,000

• Logan Phillips – Villa Heights Community Organization, Activation Studios, $34,000

• Lorien Academy of the Arts, After-School Art Clubs, $40,000

• Michelle Campbell-Gregory, Mural Warriors Cohort, $33,384

• Moving Spirits Inc, Echoes of Freedom, $40,000

• My Brother’s Keeper Charlotte-Mecklenburg, Creative Pathways: Empowering Charlotte-Mecklenburg’s Production Workforce, $40,000

• Open Door Dance Foundation, Expand Movement Spring Showcase Expansion, $40,000

• Osiris Rain, The TAOH Outdoor Gallery, $39,958

• Phoenix Down RPG, Campfire Tales, $38,252.50

• Piedmont Music Therapy, Music Therapy Workshop for Veterans & Caregivers, $9,215

• POTIONS & PIXELS NONPROFIT, Nexus: Where Art, Tech, and Gaming Converge, $40,000

• Que-OS/BOOM Charlotte, BOOM Echoes Expansion, $36,250

• Queens University of Charlotte/Gambrell Center for the Arts and Civic Engagement, The Connected Campus 2024- For the People: Democracy in Conversation, $40,000

• Quincy Woodard Intro to 3D Modeling Workshop, $6,400

• RA Arts for All, Welcome Here, $38,600

• Smithville Community Coalition, Don’t Lose Heart, $13,000

• Steven of An Atelier, The Container Plaza design project, $40,000

• Sugar Creek Charter School, Sugar Creek Charter School Arts Growth Initiative, $40,000

• The Arts Empowerment Project, Artist Residency, $40,000

• The Greater Enrichment Program (w/ Lena Hopkins-Jackson), “The Fahrenheit 704 Project,” $20,836

• VisArt Inc, VisArt’s Affordable Creative Space Program, $34,348

• We Rock Charlotte, We Rock Together: Inclusive Venue Transformation, $40,000

• ZABS Place Inclusive Art Club, $35,000

Over 300 individuals and groups submitted applications requesting up to $40,000 each, totaling nearly $10 million. Applicants who met the eligibility requirements then submitted full proposals. Grant-writing coaches were available at no cost to applicants, helping them develop the strong proposals and build skills that would serve them with future fundraising.

Funded projects will advance 13 strategies across five priorities of the Arts and Culture Plan, including ensuring sustainable and reliable funding; providing access to affordable space; eliminating barriers to arts and culture creation and participation; fostering collaboration and cooperation; and expanding arts education experiences.

Another priority of the plan is equitable and inclusive support and funding. Half the awardees indicated their mission is to serve ALAANA communities (African, Latinx, Asian, Arab and Native American ethnic or racial background); over one-third serve communities in the Corridors of Opportunity and people with different abilities or disabilities; and nearly one-third serve people of the LGBTQ+ community, with some overlap in these missions.

Grants will be distributed in July. 


The Charlotte Weekly