Congress approves NEA funds increase – for now…

Great news via the NEA:

Today, the U.S. House of Representatives approved a $15 million increase for both the National Endowment for the Arts (NEA) and National Endowment for the Humanities (NEH) for FY 2010.  Currently funded at $155 million, this increase would bring both agencies’ budgets to $170 million

Thanks to the arts leadership of House Interior Appropriations Subcommittee Chairman Norm Dicks (D-WA) and Congressional Arts Caucus co-chair Louise Slaughter (D-NY), this House-approved funding increase for the NEA exceeds President Obama’s budget request by $8.7 million and is the highest proposed appropriation for the NEA since its $176 million peak in FY 1992. On June 25, corresponding legislation in the Senate Appropriations Committee set NEA and NEH funding at only $161.3 million each.

We must now put pressure on the Senate to match the funding level set in the House of Representatives.  Please take two minutes to visit Americans for the Arts E-Advocacy Center to send a letter to your Senators.


Aside: Thanks to all of my readers for helping increase arts funding.  We all know from experience that any child, when introduced to the arts, becomes a smarter child. 

Explore Chicago – Millennium Park

Besides our great theatre, there’s so much more to do in the great world-class city of Chicago.  One of my favorite places in the city is Millennium Park.  Check it out:

Millennium Park is an award-winning center for art, music, architecture and landscape design. From free concerts in the Frank Gehry-designed Jay Pritzker Pavilion, to Jaume Plensa‘s interactive Crown Fountain, Millennium Park has something for everyone. Tour the Lurie Garden; or have your photo taken by Anish Kapoor’s hugely popular Cloud Gate sculpture. Admission is FREE. For more information, visit