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Tacoma Creates Expands Community Vibrancy

Tacoma Creates Expands Community Vibrancy


November 28, 2023



Maria Lee, Media and Communications, maria.lee@cityoftacoma.org, (253) 591-2054


Tacoma Creates Expands Community Vibrancy

- Over 1 Million Participants at Cultural Programs and Events Supported by Tacoma Creates in 2022-2023 -


TACOMA, Wash. – Tacoma Creates funded 56 organizations whose missions are to advance arts, culture, heritage, and/or science in the 2022-2023 funding cycle. With $4.5 million in funding distributed through a competitive process, those 56 organizations provided more than 1,100 cultural programs and events for the community. This was the third funding cycle for Tacoma Creates, which is the first cultural access program of its kind in Washington state.


“The investments in the organizations supported through Tacoma Creates are important to our local identity, our community vibrancy, and the growth and development of our young people,” said Mayor Victoria Woodards. “The important economic impact of our cultural sector is clear too, as shown in a recent economic impact study which proves how this sector supports jobs, builds local income, helps attract visitors, and creates local tax revenue.”


“The impact of the Tacoma Creates funding program is growing,” said Tacoma Creates Advisory Board Chair Sheree Cooks. “We are seeing how organizations are continuing to make more programming available to more people in Tacoma, which plays an important role in bringing community members together, and creating positive outlets for self-expression, especially for youth.”


Approximately one third of the programs supported were youth education programs, including programs offered in partnership with Tacoma Public Schools. In addition to classes and workshops at Tacoma Public Schools’ campuses, Tacoma Creates supported bus transportation for 175 field trips for Tacoma Public Schools’ students, broadening horizons and supporting experiential learning in arts, culture, heritage, and science. Tacoma Creates also partnered with the Tacoma Public Library and supported 67 programs at branch locations across the city.


Nearly 80 percent of the programs and events produced with Tacoma Creates funding support were offered free of charge to the community, and there were over 300,000 attendees at free, in-person cultural events. In addition to programming that brings people to cultural facilities downtown, over 65 percent of organizations’ funds were allocated towards producing programs and events in neighborhoods across the city. To see an interactive map, visit the Program Locations page of the Tacoma Creates website.


Tacoma Creates funding helps cultural organizations build sustainability and expand access to programming. During the 2022-2023 program year, organizations reported on investments in staffing, collaborations with organizations within and outside the cultural sector, and infrastructure to grow their impact and become more inclusive and equitable organizations. Many organizations have been able to increase paid work opportunities for artists and other cultural workers who are a critical part of the local creative economy.


To download a copy of the full 2022-2023 Annual Report, and to learn more about Tacoma Creates, visit tacomacreates.org.



About Tacoma Creates


Tacoma Creates is a voter-approved initiative to increase access to arts, culture, heritage, and science experiences throughout Tacoma by reducing barriers to access and expanding offerings, particularly for underserved youth. Tacoma Creates is in the Arts & Cultural Vitality division of the City of Tacoma’s Community and Economic Development Department.