Grant News You Can Use

The summer deadline for Major Humanities* and Heritage grants is May 28th. No time to pull together a grant application? No problem. There is plenty of time to prepare a grant application before the fall deadline on September 24, 2014. Plus, KHC is partnering with the Kansas Historical Society to offer grant workshops in Hays and Topeka this summer. Each workshop provides valuable information about the KHC grant application process and will help you refine your ideas. There are two dates and locations to choose from:

June 23, 2014
1-5 PM
Hays Public Library, Hays

July 8, 2014
1-5 PM
Kansas Historical Society, Topeka

The workshops are free, but registration is required. Click here to download a flyer with registration information.

If you need inspiration, here’s a short film about Stafford County Historical & Genealogical Society’s Gray Studios glass plate negatives project. The photo preservation project was supported by a Heritage grant.

Questions? Contact Murl Riedel, director of grants, at murl(at)

*Mini Humanities grant applications with award amounts of $3,500 and under are accepted year-round, as funding allows.



Countdown to Topeka Gives


June 3, 2014
7 AM to 6 PM
Fairlawn Plaza, Topeka (inside)
Rain or Shine

Join KHC at Topeka Gives, a fun day of giving sponsored by the Topeka Community Foundation. Any donation made to the Kansas Humanities Council will be matched by the Topeka Community Foundation ($25.00/minimum gift/$1,000.00 maximum gift to be matched). Click here to download a donor form (sized for 8.5 x 14 paper).

KHC staff will be at Topeka Gives from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. Stop by KHC’s booth and find out how your Topeka Gives donation to KHC supports a special hometown humanities project in Topeka. Watch the one-minute video for more information:

BIG News for KHC


KHC has BIG news to share.

KHC recently received a grant of $7,200 to host The Big Read in six Kansas communities: Coffeyville, Harper, La Cygne, Lansing, Manhattan, and Wamego. The Big Read is a program of the National Endowment for the Arts, designed to revitalize the role of reading in American culture by exposing citizens to great works of literature and encouraging them to read for pleasure. The Big Read is managed by Arts Midwest. The Kansas Humanities Council is one of 77 nonprofit organizations to receive a grant to host a Big Read project between September 2014 and June 2015.

The Big Read in Coffeyville, Harper, La Cygne, Lansing, Manhattan, and Wamego will focus on The Things They Carried  by Tim O’Brien, a novel in stories about a young platoon in the Vietnam War. The Big Read partner libraries include:

“From the beginning, KHC saw The Big Read as an opportunity to have a statewide conversation about the important and timely topic of veterans and the aftermath of war,” said Julie Mulvihill, executive director of the Kansas Humanities Council. “We’re so pleased that Arts Midwest and the National Endowment for the Arts supported our vision to extend The Big Read to six communities and we look forward to Kansans’ rich and lively humanities discussions using Tim O’Brien’s novel as the common text.”

NEA Acting Chairman Joan Shigekawa said, “While the act of reading is usually a solitary one, through the Big Read it will become a social one. This year’s Big Read grant recipients are not only playing an important role in encouraging reading but are also developing creative opportunities to involve all members of their communities to come together to discuss and celebrate these great works on literature.”

The Big Read provides communities nationwide with the opportunity to read, discuss, and celebrate one of 36 selections from U.S. and world literature. The 77 selected organizations will receive Big Read grants to promote and carry out community-based reading programs featuring activities such as read-a-thons, book discussions, lectures, movie screenings, and performing arts events. The NEA has also developed high-quality, free-of-charge educational materials to supplement each title, including reader’s guides, teacher’s guides, and audio programming, all of which are available to the public on

KHC joins fellow Kansas organizations the Independence Public Library and the Topeka & Shawnee County Public Library in receiving a Big Read grant. Click here for a full list of   the 2014-2015 The Big Read grantees.

Follow KHC on Twitter and Facebook and check the KHC Calendar of Events in the upcoming months for information about The Big Read events in Coffeyville, Harper, La Cygne, Lansing, Manhattan, and Wamego.

Reel Love

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Where can you watch a collection of short films featuring Kansas stories created by Kansans for Kansans? In the KHC Short Films Gallery, of course! There you’ll find a dozen documentary shorts on topics including Topeka’s Mariachi Estrella, Clyde Cessna, Bartlett Arboretum, soccer in Garden City, and more. The KHC Short Film Gallery was recently named #7 on the list of “Reasons We Love Kansas” in the summer 2014 issue of KANSAS! Magazine.

Click here to watch the short films.

P.S. Humanities Grants are available for documentary short films that tell a unique Kansas story rooted in the humanities. Contact Murl Riedel, director of grants, at murl(at) for more information.

Call for Proposals: Hometown Teams Speakers Bureau


Deadline: 5:00 PM, Friday, June 6, 2014
Click here for the RFP

In January 2015, KHC will launch Hometown Teams, a Smithsonian Institution traveling exhibition about sports and community. To complement the exhibition, KHC is seeking  Speakers Bureau scholars for statewide presentations that engage the humanities in sports in a meaningful way.

Hometown Teams explores the ways that sports build and unite communities. This is an open call for all sports topics with a strong humanities theme. Some topics of special interest include — but are not limited to — the following (we are open to new ideas):

Title IX and its impact on women athletes and society

The culture of community sporting events, including, but not limited to, food, traditions, and celebrations

Sports history and its impact on the broader culture

History of segregation and integration of sports teams

History and controversies surrounding sports mascots

Important people in sports and their influence on society

The economy of sports

Architecture and sports

Sports in literature, poetry, theater, and film

Sports ethics, or the negative aspects of an overemphasis on sports in culture

Alternative sports or sports from a bygone era

For more information, click here to view the RFP or contact Leslie Von Holten, program officer, at leslie(at)