Festivals Grant


App​lication Deadline:

March 2016

Staff Contact:

Ashley Hare
Arts Learning Program Director

Festivals Current Awards​​​​​​​


Festival Project grants support Phoenix-based festivals open to the general public that advance, preserve, present or celebrate:

  • one or more art or cultural forms or a genre within an art form (e.g. Music, Dance, Theatre, Film); or 
  • multi-disciplinary art forms that are the cultural or traditional expressions of diverse populations, including but not limited to communities originating in Africa, Asia, the Americas, Europe, the Pacific Islands, and Australia.

​Grant Requests

Festival grants offer a flexible area of funding assistance for artists's fees and production expenses.  Festival grants must be matched at least dollar for dollar by the applicant.  For example, if your project has a total budget of $6,000, you will need to raise $3,000 to match a grant of $3,000.  Matching funds do not need to be in hand at the time of application, but your grant application needs to  provide specific information as to where the matching funds will come from

Funding Restrictions

Grant funds cannot be used for:

  • construction or renovation of facilities
  • feasibility studies
  • capital expenditures
  • reduction of debts
  • receptions
  • lobbying expenses
  • fund-raising projects
  • re-granting
  • scholarship programs
  • staff salaries
  • membership dues or fees
  • a full season of artistic activities
  • parades
  • talent competitions
  • political-advocacy efforts
  • programs, projects and/or events not accessible to the general public, or to people with disabilities

The city of Phoenix cannot legally fund applications from organizations incorporated for religious purposes or organizations affiliated with religious organizations.

Eligibility Requirements

To be eligible for funding, your organization must meet these requirements at the time of application:

  • ​Applicant must be a registered non-profit arts organization with tax-exempt status under Section 501(c)3 of the Internal Revenue Code OR ​Applicant must be an arts organization applying under a Fiscal Agent that has tax-exempt status under Section 501(c)3 of the Internal Revenue Code. Fiscal agent must also be an arts organization. ​
  • the Festival must take place in the city of Phoenix proper (NOTE: the organization producing the festival does not need to be based in the city of Phoenix)
  • the proposed festival must start after July 1, 2015 and end no later than June 30, 2016

Not Eligible to Apply: 

  • Schools
  • Community-Based Organizations 
  • Local Arts Agencies 
  • Rental Facilities
  • Colleges and Universities 
  • City departments (and their support organizations)
  •  Arts Service Organizations 

Evaluation Criteria

Applications are reviewed by panelists using the criteria below.  Because your application will compete with other proposals, be sure to address as many points under each criterion as possible in your application.

The grant review panel will be assigning a ranking to each criterion category according to the degree to which the project responds to the subcriteria.

Artistic Merit

  • Project's ability to advance, preserve, present or celebrate art form or cultural tradition
  • Quality of international, national, regional, and/or local artists representative of art form(s)
  • Degree to which featured artists represent art forms and cultural activities of a diverse community


  • Relationship between the organization's mission and goals, and the festival's goals and activities
  • Shared ownership and responsibilities of all partners
  • Strong planning for logistics of the festival


  • Appropriateness of the costs to the services provided and the number of participants in the festival
  • In-kind support leveraged by the producing organization
  • Financial commitment from the organization and/or community supporting the festival
  • Balanced and accurate budget

Ability to complete Project

  • Available resources and expertise to administer the festival
  • Success of past festivals or other organization activities
  • Strong marketing strategy

Public Value

  • Interactive or educational activities incorporated into festival
  • Audience(s) served, targeted by festival
  • Festivals position as a unique or signature event for Phoenix