Season Grants

The Season Grant program is intended to provide access to quality arts experiences for the people of Durham by supporting the activities of arts organizations that provide a range of professional and amateur arts opportunities. The Season Grant program will award grants for annual operations or projects.

If your organization has already been funded through the Season Grant program continue to use the Season Grant application. If you have never submitted a grant application to the Durham Arts Council, we recommend that you consider the Durham Arts Catalyst Program.

Season Grants

Grant Eligibility

Season Grants
  • Applicant must be a non-profit organization with 501(c) (3) status based in Durham County or providing at least 50% of it’s programming in Durham County.
  • An applicant does not have to be an arts organization to request project support but the project must be an arts activity. 
  • Arts projects or the operating expenses of arts organizations are eligible for funding. Season Grants may not be used to support fund-raising activities.
  • To request operating support the applicant must be an arts organization.


Application Process

  • January 4, 2020

    Application Available 

  • April 13, 2020

    Application Deadline

  • End of July 2020

    Notification of award status

  • July 1, 2020 - June 30, 2021

    Completion of Activities 

  • July, 2021

    Final Reports Due

Information Session

January 21, 2020 — 6:00 p.m. (Tuesday)
Hosted by Durham Arts Council
contact Margaret DeMott for more information


The application for the Season Grant Program opens in January and is due in March.  The grant will fund projects occurring between the following July-June.  For 2022 Season Grant Applications will be open by April 2021 and be due in May for activity occurring between July 1, 2021 and June 30, 2022.

Information Session

January 21, 2020 — 6:00 p.m. (Tuesday)
Hosted by Durham Arts Council
contact Margaret DeMott for more information


Frequently Asked Questions

Who decides which artists receive awards?

A panel of area artists and arts professionals reviews and scores each application. The panel reviews the entire body of applications and recommends grant awards to the DAC Board of Trustees. The DAC Board of Trustees then must approve the recommendations of the panel for the process to be complete. 

What criteria are applications judged on?

Each application will receive a numeric score for each of the criteria ranging from 1 to 5 (1 being lowest, 5 being highest).

  • Artistic quality of proposed project or programs
  • Community impact of project or programs
  • Ability to plan and implement project
  • Stability and fiscal responsibility of the organization
  • Involvement of more than one racial/ethnic group

Why does DAC ask about the participation of people from more than one racial/ethnic background?

Durham Arts Council recognizes that more than 50% of Durham’s population is African-American, Asian-American, Latinx or Native American. As a steward of public and private funds, DAC strives to provide a representative portion of grant support for arts programming that reflects the racial and ethnic diversity of the County. While we do not expect that every application will propose to serve all cultures represented by Durham’s population, we will look for proposals that explain how the applicant has invited and encouraged representatives of different cultures to participate in the program(s) whether as artists, administrators, audience members or volunteers. We believe that, as appropriate to their missions, the on-going stability of community arts organizations is fortified by their ability to draw on more than one racial/ethnic culture for resources, energy and vision.

Season Grants


What can I apply for?

You may apply for funds and/or for use of space in the Durham Arts Council building. You may not request more than $10,000 cash. Space grants vary from ongoing use of office, meeting, rehearsal and performance space to the use of a theatre for a single concert. The Durham Arts Council building is a 52,000 sq. ft., city-owned, community arts center that contains spaces for dance, theatre and music rehearsals, meeting rooms, offices, exhibit and performance spaces. As part of your Season Grant request you may ask for use of these spaces for a particular project or for on-going operations. There are fees associated with use of granted space in the building.

Where does the money for Season Grants come from?

The Season Grant Program is funded by the gifts of private individuals and corporations to the Durham Arts Council Annual Arts Fund and by the Grassroots Arts Program of the North Carolina Arts Council, a division of the Department of Natural & Cultural Resources. DAC does not require a specific match for a cash grant, however, we will look for evidence that the applicant has actively pursued more than one source for the resources needed and does not expect DAC to provide everything through this Season Grant.

Still have questions?