ECCF is committed to investing in knowledge and technical support to engage communities in municipal planning that is inclusive of arts and culture.
Through 2022, ECCF will invest more than $250,000 in cultural planning initiatives that create better conditions for the arts sector to thrive.
If you are interested in free, local cultural planning technical assistance, please see application here.
our goals for cultural planning
- Essex County will be recognized as a supportive region for creative professionals.
- Strengthen the capacity for collaboration within and between communities.
- Foster inclusion and equity among our diverse communities.
- Broaden the value of tangible and intangible cultural assets related to community development goals.
merrimack valley: place and meaning in 2020
In 2020 our Merrimack Valley cultural planning work shifted to two virtual projects. A searchable digital Cultural Focal Points map is now a permanent resource for the region’s planners and policy makers. We invite you to add data to this new community asset!
And, led by the creative team at Elevated Thought, Merrimack Valley Expression Book 2020 was created as a beautiful tribute to the places, spaces, and people that make living in the Merrimack Valley meaningful, especially in this most challenging year.
Merrimack Valley Expression Book 2020
A tribute to the beautiful places, spaces and people that make living in the Merrimack Valley meaningful.
2019 cultural planning labs
The goal of the labs was to introduce the community benefits of cultural planning to stakeholders in Essex County. Desired outcomes included:
- An expanded base of knowledge about the benefits of a cultural planning approach.
- An expanded base of knowledge about cultural resources in Essex County and their importance to the livability and vitality of the region.
- An expanded regional network of support for county-level cultural planning initiatives, which will commence in calendar year 2019.
ECCF’s Creative County work is powered by the contributions of our generous community.
arts and culture
Live performances, inspiring speakers and a $2 million funding announcement top the 2022 Essex County Arts and Culture Summit By Michelle Xiarhos Curran When the beat dropped during Ana Masacote’s high-energy salsa performance at the 2022 Essex County Arts &...
ECCF celebrates five years of Creative County at The Cabot on Sept. 30 Beverly, MA --- Hundreds of artists and community leaders will converge upon The Cabot on Sept. 30 to celebrate five years of the Creative County Initiative, Essex County Community Foundation’s...
Danvers, MA --- Essex County Community Foundation is excited to announce the second cohort of creative leaders who will participate in the foundation’s Creative County ChangeMakers program, set to begin March 28. Twelve artists, nonprofit and municipal heads will...
Creative County supports agriCulture, a new gathering spot in Gloucester By Michelle Xiarhos Curran Nonprofit Backyard Growers built the community garden at Willowood, a Gloucester Housing Authority development, in 2017, and they have managed it ever since. In the...
COLUMN IN THE SALEM NEWSBy Karen Ristuben SEE ORIGINAL COLUMN IN THE SALEM NEWS HERE. Artists will always make art. They will forever paint, play music, dance, create stories and bring those stories to life on stage. But now more than ever before, artists and arts and...
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Creative County Initiative
“A city as rich in cultural history as Methuen is a perfect fit for the Merrimack Valley Place and Meaning Project. I heartily encourage all Methuen residents to participate in this worthwhile effort and ensure that all aspects that make this city unique are memorialized for all to see and understand.”
– Neil Perry,
Mayor City of Methuen
how can we help?
We would love to hear from you.