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ARTS Neighborhood Recovery Guidelines

The Arts and Culture Neighborhood Recovery Program is a City of Seattle Office of Arts & Culture (ARTS)-funded program to provide grants for arts and cultural events/activations in neighborhoods through community-based Lead Organizations; for the South Lake Union neighborhood, the Lead Organization is MOHAI. There are 14 Lead Organizations focused on neighborhoods or communities throughout Seattle.

MOHAI prioritizes projects serving and/or led by groups that have been most negatively impacted by the COVID pandemic, and that align with both MOHAI’s and the City of Seattle’s commitments to equity, inclusion and public safety.

Cultural events, experiences, and spaces provide the reason for people to gather, confer identify, and build community which are even more critically important during the current COVID pandemic and recovery process. This program seeks to support recovery efforts through collaboration, equity, resiliency and safety in alignment with the City of Seattle’s vision of One Seattle.

As the Lead Organization for the South Lake Union neighborhood, MOHAI will sub-contract to neighborhood-based organizations and small businesses to carry out inclusive and creative arts and culture endeavors that further the city’s pandemic recovery process. Applicants must conduct events or activations within or in service to the South Lake Union neighborhood.

Activations or events should rebuild and assist in arts and culture recovery; these do not need to be entirely new events.

The total amount of funding available through MOHAI for the South Lake Union area is $63,750.

Applicants may request various amounts up to $20,000.

Review the full detailed guidelines below, and if you meet the criteria, click the link below to request the full application.

Request Access to ARTS Neighborhood Recovery Application

Who is eligible?

  • Non-profit organizations (arts, culture, and others) focused on events or activations within the South Lake Union neighborhood are eligible. See here (link) for a map of this area.
  • Small businesses with a City of Seattle business license are eligible, however, a small business who is a sole proprietor can apply but must collaborate with other individual artists or others for the proposed project.
  • Applicants can apply to more than one Lead Organization for this city-wide program, however, can only receive funding from one Lead Organization (see list of other Lead Organizations at end of this document).
  • Applicants do not need to have their primary address in the designated neighborhood/community, however, the activation or event must be within the South Lake Union neighborhood.
  • Applicants should have a history and track record of direct connection to the arts and cultural life of the city.
  • Activations or events must be broadly advertised and accessible to the public. Free event admission is preferred, or using a low-cost or sliding fee scale. Events should be physically accessible.
  • Applicants must have capacity to successfully manage the proposed project, prepare regular reporting, and complete final reports due no later than September 15, 2023;
  • All events will need to provide event liability insurance and name MOHAI and City of Seattle as additionally insured.
  • Awarded programs will be required to follow all current Federal, State, County, and City COVID-19 mandates and protocols. More information and in other languages are available on the City of Seattle COVID-19 Vaccination Requirement website.

Funds may be used for

  • Costs directly related to event or activation (staffing, equipment rental, paying performers, materials, etc.)
  • Examples of public activations or events:
    • A series of performances at an indoor or outdoor venue
    • Temporary public art or lighting (permit/approval must be secured prior to award)
    • Festivals, fairs, or public events (can be for specific part of a larger event)
    • Art exhibits
    • Art or cultural workshops or classes.

Funds may not be used for

  • Events held outside Seattle city limits
  • Capital improvements or purchase of equipment
  • Travel costs (local transportation costs for performers, for example, are ok)
  • Religious events
  • Programming in which fundraising is the primary purpose.

Selection criteria

  • Criteria 1: Project Feasibility (30 Points)
  • Criteria 2: Community Building, Equity, Accessibility and COVID recovery support (50 Points)
  • Criteria 3: Background and Capacity (20 Points)


February 1st Application open/available (includes Guidelines, Application, & Budget Template) Applications accessible on
March 1 Application deadline. Submit applications via
End of March Review panel meets to discuss each application in relation to the program criteria and make funding recommendations.
April Applicants are notified whether they have been recommended for funding, are contracted with, and events can begin.
Ongoing Awardees carry-out arts and cultural events.
September 15 Awardees submit their reporting documents to MOHAI and final report due no later than September 15, 2023.

Application tips

All funding programs can be highly competitive. We encourage you to:

  1. Read these guidelines, check your eligibility, and follow the instructions carefully.
  2. Explore the application early so you can plan ahead.
  3. Update Seattle Business License, if needed.
  4. Be clear and concise in your application. Panelists read and evaluate many applications.

Obligation of Award Recipients


Organizations and individuals receiving awards from MOHAI and funded by Seattle Office of Arts & Culture (ARTS) must acknowledge MOHAI and the City of Seattle’s support in printed materials, signage visible to the public, via social media, or in other ways appropriate to the project. MOHAI and Seattle ARTS will supply preferred wording and logos in electronic format.


Regular reports and final reports and invoicing will be due according to the contract schedule, and negotiated with MOHAI. Reports will include data (demographic, # of people attending, etc.) and narrative as outlined in the contract.

For additional information, contact:

List of Other Organizations/Areas Serving as Lead Organizations

Africatown Community Land Trust: Central Area

Beacon Arts: Beacon Hill (including Mt Baker)

Delridge Neighborhoods Development Association: Delridge, Highland Park, Westwood (north of SW Roxbury)

Downtown Seattle Asociation: Downtown

Friends of Waterfront Seattle: Waterfront

Gay City Health Project: Capitol Hill

Georgetwon CDA: Georgetown and South Park

Historic South Downtown: Pioneer Square and Chinatown/International District (including Little Saigon and Japantown)

Lake City Collective: North Seattle (specifically Lake City, Greenwood, Northgate, Bitter Lake, and Aurora, north of 85th)

Museum of History and Industry (MOHAI): South Lake Union

Na’ah Illahee Fund: City-wide

South End Seattle Art Center: Rainier Valley

U District Partnership: University District

West Seattle Junction: West Seattle Junction

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