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The California Arts Council announced it plans to award $42,500 to the San Benito County Arts Council as part of its new Creative California Communities program. This award will support the council's "Activate Downtown" project to stimulate creative-placemaking in downtown Hollister. In collaboration with the Hollister Downtown Assocation, this project will harness the arts as a catalyst for economic growth, neighborhood revitalization and community engagement by activating designated sites in downtown Hollister, as well as activating the arts community through capacity building and marketing.

Projects supported by the Creative California Communities program represent a wide range of arts disciplines, and aim to revitalize neighborhoods through the arts, foster new arts engagement, stimulate tourism, create jobs for artists, invest in young people, and build relationships between local arts, business, and government entities.

"We are honored to be chosen as one of 24 grantees throughout the state of California for this competitive grant program," said Jennifer Laine, executive director of the San Benito County Arts Council. "This grant comes at an opportune time with the recent transfer of San Benito Street back to the City of Hollister, and this project aims to integrate art and culture into the development of downtown. Not only do arts and culture provide enrichment opportunities and improve the quality of life for local residents, but they also function as powerful catalysts for neighborhood revitalization and community engagement. This is especially important in a rural community like ours, which has access to fewer resources compared to larger metropolitan areas. We have a lot of work ahead of us and are look forward to getting started."

For more information, contact the SBC Arts Council by email at or by phone at 831-636-2787.