Chelsea Area Festivals & Events (CAFE) has been awarded a mini-grant of $2,750 from the State of Michigan Council for Arts and Cultural Affairs (MCACA). CAFE is one of six organizations that received grants in the final round of funding for Region 9 that includes Hillsdale, Jackson, Livingston, Lenawee, and Washtenaw counties. Creative Washtenaw administers this program on behalf of MCACA.

Crystal Scott, Visual Arts Coordinator for CAFE commented “This grant is important and will assist CAFE in the management and oversight of the exhibition. We are continuously seeking ways to enhance visitors’ enjoyment of SculptureWalk Chelsea.” CAFE recently invested in larger, more visible plaques at each of the sculptures. 

This annual outdoor exhibition will be celebrating its 12th anniversary. Fourteen juried sculptures, the majority created by Michigan Artists continue to be showcased throughout historic downtown Chelsea. Each exhibiting Artist receives a stipend of $850, an increase from the previous year. 

The exhibition has a history of strong community partnership and support. A recent example is the purchase of a sculpture, one of two that have been on display at the 

Chelsea District Library. “The Chelsea District Library is pleased to add the metal sculpture, Elk Bugling, to its art collection. This intriguing acquisition created with a wide variety of found objects will continue to invigorate the public space surrounding the library and embody the library’s mission to engage and inspire the community. It is sure to delight visitors for years to come!” commented Lori Coryell, Library Director. 

Artist Kyle Burnett, from Battle Creek, was inspired by the Elk in Northern Michigan in creating Elk Bugling with recycled metals. 

Community support also comes in the form of sponsorships; each of the 14 sculptures is financially sponsored by local businesses. The City of Chelsea has provided financial assistance and support with the installation and removal of the sculptures in this rotating annual exhibit. 

Craig Common, President of CAFE shared his appreciation, “We are thankful for MCACA’s confidence and ongoing support of this visual art project that has become an integral part of the visual and cultural arts community in Chelsea.” 

SculptureWalk is free for all visitors and community residents. The sculptures are available for purchase, with most of the proceeds going to the Artist and the balance reinvested into the program. This outdoor exhibition has been especially appreciated during this past year. Anyone interested in purchasing a sculpture or arranging for a docent-led tour can contact Visual Arts Coordinator,Crystal

Scott visualarts@chelseafestivals.com.

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Chelsea Area Festivals & Events is a not-for-profit organization that enriches Chelsea, and the surrounding communities, by promoting the presentation of and participation in quality performing and visual arts throughout the year. CAFE hosts Sounds & Sights on Thursday Nights, the Sounds & Sights Summer Festival and SculptureWalk Chelsea. The festivals are funded through sponsorships and donations. Our events draw thousands of visitors each year, and would not be possible without the support of local businesses, non-profits, and many, many volunteers in the community. chelseafestivals.com

The minigrant applications are reviewed by a panel of artists, residents and organizational leaders from the region using criteria set by the MCACA. This ensures the taxpayers, who support this project through legislative appropriations, and all other visitors or residents in Michigan will have access to the highest quality arts and cultural experiences. The Arts & Cultural Projects minigrants provide support for the production, presentation and creation of excellent arts and culture programs that promote public engagement, diversity, lifelong learning and help to enhance the livability of communities. creativewashtenaw.org