Nickel Plate Arts Receives $10,000 Duke Energy Grant

Mark LaBarr of Duke Energy stands with Aili McGill, director of Nickel Plate Arts. In back are NPArts staff Kristi Rowe, Kavita Mahoney and Rachael O'Dell.

Nickel Plate Arts Receives $10,000 Duke Energy Grant

Funding Will Fuel Arts Programs For Underserved Residents

NOBLESVILLE, IND. — Nickel Plate Arts has received a $10,000 grant from the Duke Energy Foundation to support community-building efforts in Hamilton County’s Jackson Township. The funding will help the organization invest in the creative economies of communities currently battling population decline. The grant will fund several significant initiatives in Atlanta, Arcadia and Cicero, including the development of strategic plans to strengthen arts and culture in each community. Specific projects include a makerspace and collaborative arts workspace in Atlanta, a series of community-centered arts events in Cicero and an operating plan for the Arcadia Arts & Heritage Depot.

“It’s easy for our attention to be diverted to Noblesville and Fishers because those communities are larger and more robust,” says Nickel Plate Arts Director Aili McGill, “but we think that our greatest impact in 2017 will be in Jackson Township, through the unification and strengthening of the projects outlined in our grant application.”

The grant will help Nickel Plate Arts connect underserved residents with cultural, arts and entrepreneurial opportunities. Grassroots efforts will include public art events, classes for children and adults and professional resources for creative entrepreneurs.

“We are excited to be able to help fuel the arts-related efforts that have just started bubbling up in Atlanta and Cicero and are very happy to be able to help Arcadia’s Arts and Heritage depot find new vitality for the future,” says McGill. “We are so grateful for the Duke Foundation’s willingness to invest in the creative economy and envision an inspiring future for the Nickel Plate Arts region.”

“Community vitality involves more than just jobs, businesses and economic development,” says Mark LaBarr, Duke Energy Indiana government and community relations manager for Hamilton County. “The arts enhance and promote a quality of life that transcends economics. We’re pleased to support artistic endeavors already underway in Atlanta, Arcadia and Cicero.”

About Nickel Plate Arts:

Nickel Plate Arts is an umbrella nonprofit organization that creates and coordinates arts and cultural experiences across communities to improve the quality of life for residents, strengthen local economies and enrich experiences for visitors. Nickel Plate Arts is a project of Hamilton County Tourism, Inc. The Nickel Plate Arts Trail extends 30 miles through Fishers, Noblesville, Cicero, Arcadia, Atlanta and Tipton. Visit us at 107 S. 8th Street in Noblesville, online at nickelplatearts.org or call 317-452-3690.

About the Duke Energy Foundation:

The Duke Energy Foundation provides philanthropic support to address the needs of the communities where its customers live and work. The foundation provides more than $30 million annually in charitable gifts. The foundation’s education focus spans kindergarten to career, particularly science, technology, engineering and math (STEM), early childhood literacy and workforce development. It also supports the environment and community impact initiatives, including arts and culture.

(PHOTO: Mark LaBarr of Duke Energy stands with Aili McGill, director of Nickel Plate Arts. In back are NPArts staff Kristi Rowe, Kavita Mahoney and Rachael O’Dell. Photo credit: Brian Brosmer.)

Casey Kenley
casey@caseykenley.com