The New Jersey Historical Commission Board has awarded grants totaling $2.5 million to organizations in all of New Jersey twenty-one counties. The grants, funded by a portion of the state Hotel/Motel Tax, are earmarked for projects, general operational support, or county historic partnership programs. Fiscal Year 2019 marks the final year of the three-year grant cycle initiated after a reevaluation of the grant process in 2017. The restructured program has succeeded in diversifying both the programs offered by New Jersey’s cultural institutions and the audience that engages with them. The commission plans to solicit feedback from grant recipients on ways to improve the grants for the coming cycle.
The largest single grant, which accounts for 10% of the total awarded, was committed to the Mid-Atlantic Center for Arts and Humanities (MAC) in Cape May. The MAC has rehabilitated and administrated several sites in the historic shore town, including the 1879 Emlen Physick House and the 1859 Cape May Lighthouse, and has created cultural events like the Cape May Music Festival held annually since 1990.
Other large grants went to the Rutgers University Libraries, the Ocean County Cultural and Heritage Association, and Morris County Park Commission. A full list of grant recipients can be found on the NJ Historical Commission’s website (note: link will open as a PDF file).