Applications open for NEA’s ‘Big Read’ program

Arts orgs eligible for $20,000 grants

Application deadline: WEDNESDAY, JANUARY 27, 2021

Arts Midwest is now accepting applications for the 2021/2022 National Endowment for the Arts Big Read Program.

pile of books on a wooden stoolThe NEA Big Read is a community engagement opportunity with grants of up to $20,000 for community-wide reading programs (virtual and/or in-person). Organizations can choose one of six available books. They can also tie in thematically-related books of their choice to expand the program’s potential and reach a wider audience.

Eligible organizations include arts organizations, but also:

  • community service organizations,
  • institutions of higher education,
  • libraries and literary centers,
  • museums,
  • school districts,
  • tribal governments, and more!

Past grantees have a proven track record of successfully engaging their audiences through the power of literature and stirring up a passion for reading that persists year after year.  They’ve also developed meaningful and lasting partnerships with other organizations in their community. Studies have shown that reading for pleasure has positive impacts on one’s health and this program can also provide entertainment and connection to community members in a time of isolation.

The deadline to apply is January 27, 2021. Learn more about the NEA Big Read via the attached grant guidelines and at this link:

If you have any questions, please contact Arts Midwest at or 612.238.8010.