AARP awards grant to Next Stage Arts

PUTNEY — Next Stage Arts in Putney is receiving $4,000 in grant funds from AARP Vermont, one of six grants awarded to Vermont communities to initiate or enhance winter placemaking demonstration projects.

The projects focus on creating or reinventing public spaces to improve safety, accessibility, and overall appeal on a temporary or permanent basis. Proposals from Burlington, Rutland, White River Junction, Mendon, Putney, and Swanton were selected from dozens of applications for the initiative.

Next Stage Arts says it will use the grant to create an engaging outdoor art exhibition for the 50-and-over community on the (1)maintained Putney Forest trails. The group will also hold walks and snowshoeing treks through the exhibit. A warming shelter with hot drinks and snacks will be available for participants.

This is the sixth year of AARP Vermont's Placemaking Grant Program, which aims to spearhead demonstration project efforts that will help build momentum for long-term livability improvements with an emphasis on the needs of adults age 50 and over.

“This is an opportunity for six Vermont communities to take quick actions that can lead to a critical spark for longer-term progress,” Kelly Stoddard Poor of AARP Vermont said in a news release. “We know that simple modifications can powerfully alter the health, economic, social, and ecological value of a community and when community members and local officials can see or experience a new or revitalized space, they are better able to understand what is possible and how it can improve their community. Projects like these have led to exciting new improvements in communities across the state and country.”

In support of these projects, AARP Vermont says it will provide technical assistance and publicity strategy, and assist project leaders in engaging with other local, regional or state partner organizations that can contribute to their success.

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