The following is a text-only press release from the federal Institute of
Museum and Library Services (IMLS).An HTML version of this release can
be viewed on the agency's Web site at

July 13, 2010

IMLS Press Contacts
Jeannine Mjoseth, [log in to unmask]
Mamie Bittner, [log in to unmask] 

IMLS Awards $19.5 Million in Museums for America Grants to 178

Washington, DC-The Institute of Museum and Library Services (IMLS) is
pleased to announce that 178 museums across the country will receive a
total of $19,550,456 in Museums for America (MFA) grants. These museums,
chosen from 510 applicants, represent 39 states, the District of
Columbia, and Puerto Rico. Grants will support high-priority activities
that advance the missions and strategic goals of these museums, helping
them to serve the public more effectively.

"This year's MFA grant recipients are truly an exciting and diverse
group of museums, representing the remarkable ways that large and small
institutions are serving communities. Funded projects support
digitization and collections management plans, enhanced accessibility,
environmental literacy, and much more. The work of these institutions
will educate and inspire citizens of all ages," said Acting Director
Marsha L. Semmel. "IMLS is pleased to support museums as they engage
their communities through programming tailored to their specific needs,
and this round of MFA grants furthers this work." 

Awarded in three categories (engaging communities, building
institutional capacity, and collections stewardship), MFA grants fund
projects such as educational programs and exhibits, staff and volunteer
training, research, planning, technological upgrades, and equipment

This year, MFA grant awards include projects such as: 
* The Massachusetts Audubon Society in Lincoln, MA, will add
ADA-accessible elements to eight nature trails. These enhancements will
provide culturally-competent content and experiences that are
sensory-rich, tactile, universally themed, and designed for visitors who
have rarely had the opportunity to visit a wildlife sanctuary. 
* The University of New Mexico's Maxwell Museum of Anthropology in
Albuquerque, NM, will develop a collaborative digital repository for New
Mexico museums. This innovative repository will provide participating
museums with a cost-effective long-term data storage capability and a
public access Web site to foster and support collaboration and education
across disciplinary, social, political, and geographical boundaries.
* The New York Hall of Science in Queens, NY, will begin The Sustainable
Community Collaborations Project which will engage local Hispanic,
Chinese, and Korean communities in a process to develop science
programming. Programming will be steeped in the cultural and scientific
histories of these groups and will make science accessible by embedding
it within familiar cultural traditions.
* The Arkansas Museum of Science and History in Little Rock, AR, will
create two new exhibit experiences: "Tornado Alley Object Theater" and
"Extreme Weather Channel." The exhibits will educate visitors on the
causes, potential effects, and safety measures to follow when threatened
by tornados-an event familiar to the region. 
* Historical Society of Saginaw County in Saginaw, MI, will facilitate
"History on the Move," a unique mobile classroom, which will teach local
history in a modified tractor-trailer. The project addresses the need
for substantive local history education in Saginaw County, Michigan, and
provides an innovative solution to the lack of time and funding for
students to visit museums during the school day. 
* The Cleveland Museum of Art in Cleveland, OH, will create a team of
staff members representing education, curatorial, conservation, and
collections departments to jointly interpret 425 art works in the
museum's Lifelong Learning Center. These "Behind the Scenes" spaces will
introduce visitors to the concepts of collecting, understanding,
preserving, and presenting works of art.
* The Monterey Bay Aquarium in Monterey, CA, will expand its
professional development programs for teachers, providing 450 teachers
with new tools, skills, and the support they need to engage and inspire
approximately 49,500 students to gain the basic ocean science and
critical thinking skills necessary to be effective citizens and ocean
stewards. An online professional community will also allow teachers to
network with their colleagues about their successes and roadblocks
through wikis, blogs, and mentor connections. 

For more information about the rest of this year's grantees, click here View 2010 Museums for
America Grant Award Statistics here

To learn more about Museums for America, the largest museum grant
program administered by IMLS, please click here The next deadline
for the Museums for America program is November 1, 2010.

About the Institute of Museum and Library Services 
The Institute of Museum and Library Services is the primary source of
federal support for the nation's 123,000 libraries and 17,500 museums.
The Institute's mission is to create strong libraries and museums that
connect people to information and ideas. The Institute works at the
national level and in coordination with state and local organizations to
sustain heritage, culture, and knowledge; enhance learning and
innovation; and support professional development. To learn more about
the Institute, please visit