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Grants

The Watertown Cultural Council (WCC) is one of 355 Local Cultural Council Programs and serves Watertown. WCC is part of the largest grassroots cultural funding network in the nation annually supporting thousands of community-based projects in the arts, humanities, and sciences. WCC is funded in large part by the state through the Mass Cultural Council (MCC).

The mission of the MCC is “to promote excellence, access, education and diversity in the arts, humanities and interpretive sciences in order to improve the quality of life for all Massachusetts residents and to contribute to the economic vitality of our communities.”

Watertown individuals, schools, and cultural organizations are eligible to apply for project support from WCC. Funding for cultural field trips is also available through the PASS Program, which subsidizes the cost of admission for students to attend performances, educational tours and exhibits. For more information, click on Application Form and MCC Guidelines.

Since its establishment in 1982, the WCC has distributed over $200,000 and funded over 500 programs that have enriched the lives of tens of thousands of community residents. Examples of the grants include musical programs in nursing homes, theater and dance performances in the schools, summer concerts in Saltonstall Park, family programs at Gore Place, dramatic readings at the library, artistic and photographic displays in area galleries, and poetry workshops for children. Our support has provided opportunities to strengthen and celebrate the town’s many diverse communities, through programs such as a hip-hop dance performance at the Perkins School for the Blind, displays in the Armenian Library and Museum, a collection of folktales from the Kurdish population, and a performance of Klezmer music at the library. (see list of past grants).

We value Watertown’s unique past by funding “living history” projects in the schools and library, and by helping artists and sculptors to create works that recount times gone by. We also recognize Watertown’s special location on the Charles River by providing grants to individuals who have photographed and cataloged the flora and fauna by its banks.

Other Activities


WCC is funded in two ways:

  1. Like all of the 355 Local Cultural Councils around the state, we receive an allotment of funds each year from the MCC. The money allocated to each community is determined by using one of the state’s Local Aid formulas established by the state Legislature. The formula is based on population and equalized property values in order to provide low-income communities with relatively larger allocations.
  2. We are funded by money that we raise through fund-raisers and donations from individuals and community organizations interested in benefiting the arts, humanities, and interpretive sciences of Watertown.