IBMA Foundation announces 2023 project grant recipients

The IBMA Foundation, the educational and philanthropic arm of the International Bluegrass Music Association, has announced the recipients of their 2023 Project Grants. These annual awards are given to organizations and associations that foster bluegrass education.

The Foundation was quite proud to note that increased donations have allowed them to award $24,200 in project grants this year, to 13 bluegrass programs across 10 different states. Those numbers reflect major increases from the $14,000 distributed in 2021, and $21,334 in 2022.

Fred Bartenstein, who chairs the Board of the IBMA Foundation thanks the many donors who support their work.

“A diverse list of recipients for 2023 will support bluegrass education for both young people and adults. We are grateful to donors who continue to support the Foundation. Their generosity has helped to support very deserving programs.”

Support for this year’s grants also came from Dick Barnhart, a bluegrass fan and ally, who made a generous bequest.

The 2023 Program Grants are awarded to:

  • Appalachian Fiddle and Banjo Association, Wind Gap, PA – a historic mural preservation and exhibit at the Bluegrass Music Hall of Fame and Museum
  • ArtsQuest, Bethlehem, PA – a free educational bluegrass event for the public
  • Asheville (NC) Symphony Society – Asheville Amadeus Festival, with artist in residence Béla Fleck working with youth orchestra and JAM groups
  • Birthplace of Country Music Museum, Bristol, TN and VA – I’ve Endured: Women in Old-Time Music exhibit
  • California Bluegrass Association, San Francisco, CA – Supports CBA’s Bluegrass Bridge program which brings bluegrass music to incarcerated individuals at Avenal State Prison and beyond, through live performances, workshop, and donated instruments 
  • East Tennessee State University, Johnson City, TN – String Band Summit
  • Junior Appalachian Musicians, Virginia, North Carolina, Tennessee, Kentucky, and South Carolina – promotion and recruitment for JAM bluegrass programs at schools in five-state region 
  • Louisville (KY) Folk Music School  youth bluegrass summer camp
  • Miraleste Intermediate School, Huntington Beach, CA – to start a school bluegrass club with supplemental fiddle and banjo instructors
  • Queen Bee Music Association, Crested Butte, CO, and Santa Fe, NM – Queen Bee’s Kids Bluegrass Camp which focuses on beginning-intermediate players age 7-16, half of whom have never played an instrument before
  • RVA Bluegrass Jam, Richmond, VA – Marathon Jam April 22, 2023, featuring free educational concerts from local and regional bands with proceeds to benefit veterans through the Fisher House and Liberation Veterans Services
  • Tryon (NC) Fine Arts Center – Pathways: Sustaining Junior Appalachian Musician involvement at Earl Scruggs Music Festival
  • Wintergrass Music Festival, Bellevue, WA – Eclectic Styles Youth Orchestra, with a focus this year on bluegrass and Louisiana music interaction and learning.

The IBMA Foundation accepts donations of any size, and bundles them together to support programs that foster bluegrass-related arts and culture, education, literary work, and historic preservation.

Further details about giving to the Foundation, which is fully tax deductible, can be found online.

Share this:

About the Author

John Lawless

John had served as primary author and editor for The Bluegrass Blog from its launch in 2006 until being folded into Bluegrass Today in September of 2011. He continues in that capacity here, managing a strong team of columnists and correspondents.