Maggie's Minute: A Colorado Humanities Update, June 30

Hello Friends!

Let's take a minute from the onward rush into high summer to share a handful of thoughts, updates and highlights. Here are a few from Colorado Humanities:

20th annual Colorado Book Award winners have been announced! The weather for the June award ceremony in Aspen was beautiful and we were honored to have John Y. Cole, director of the Center for the Book in the Library of Congress, as our special guest. And, a special round of applause for our CBA sponsors, Outskirts Press, Vectra Bank and Zions First National Bank!

For those of you looking for additional summer reading, the 2011 Student Literary Awards Anthology is now available at our online store. These winning works from our Letters About Literature and River of Words student comepetitions are an inspiration you and your family are bound to enjoy.

Two new board members were elected at our June board meeting: Lindsey Mikal of Denver, education practice director for Communications Strategy Group, and, Susan Hall of Grand Junction, retired elementary school teacher for Mesa County Valley School District and a coordinator for our Young Chautauqua program.

More good news: We've received two grants from the National Endowment for the Arts. One will help support our Writers in the Schools K-12 program and the other our Authors in Community program, also for K-12 schools as well as many community venues. We're grateful to the Temple Hoyne Buell Foundation as well, whose generosity helps support our Motheread/Fatheread Colorado program for adult and early childhood educators. We're very encouraged by this support for the three great programs, especially in the face of the recent decline in funding for the humanities.

Community First Foundation announced in June that the next Colorado Gives Day has been scheduled for Dec. 6. On that day, Coloradans will rally to donate online to raise funds for nonprofits across the state. The recent reduction of the National Endowment for the Humanities 2011 budget has resulted in a disheartening cut of 8.8% for Colorado Humanities and all of the 56 state humanities councils. Opportunities like Colorado Gives Day are becoming more and more important to us all, and help individuals work together to make a real difference.

We're looking forward to seeing you at our upcoming community festivals: Voices of the Valley Chautauqua in Pueblo July 29-30, and, High Plains Chautauqua in Greeley Aug. 2-6.

If you'd like to hear more, just let me know. And, when you have a moment, please let me know what you are doing, too.

Hope your summer has had a wonderful start!

Maggie Coval, Executive Director

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