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Folklife Network

Puerto Rican arts and culture group Cultura Plenera hosting a community dance workshop at Sandy Spring Museum, a regional folkli
Decoys from the collection of carver Rich Smoker, board chairman of the Ward Museum of Wildfowl Art, a regional folklife center

Folklife Network


COVID-19 Program Updates and Resources

In response to COVID-19, the Maryland State Arts Council convened on March 25, 2020 and approved the following changes for the Folklife Network Grant:

  1. All match requirements have been suspended until further notice.

  2. Funding use restrictions have been alleviated and may be used for any arts-related expense until further notice.

  3. Use of FY20 funds may be extended until November 30, 2020 by submitting a request to

Find all other MSAC COVID-19 information here. 



The Folklife Network program funds organizations serving as regional folklife centers in Maryland. Regional folklife centers are defined as continuing programmatic or educational efforts made by an organization to support folklife, or community-based living cultural traditions handed down by example or word of mouth. Organizations eligible for Folklife Network funds are Maryland-incorporated nonprofit organizations, Maryland colleges and universities, and units of government. Grants are between $10,000 and $50,000 each.

In Fiscal Year (FY) 2021 (July 1, 2020 - June 30, 2021), MSAC will accept applications to support one new regional folklife center in each of the three following regions:

  • Baltimore (Baltimore City)
  • Mid-state (Carroll, Frederick, and Howard counties)
  • Upper Shore (Caroline, Cecil, Kent, Queen Anne’s, and Talbot counties)

In FY 2021, MSAC will accept applications to support continuing activities at existing regional folklife centers in the five following regions:

  • Appalachian (Garrett, Allegany, and Washington counties)
  • Greater Baltimore (Anne Arundel, Baltimore, and Harford counties)
  • Capital (Montgomery and Prince George’s counties)
  • Southern (Charles, Calvert, and St. Mary’s counties)
  • Lower Shore (Dorchester, Wicomico, Somerset, and Worcester counties)

Members of the public are invited to observe the FY 2021 Folklife Network panel, which will be hosted virtually on Thursday, June 25, from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. Access the meeting on that date and time by navigating to or dialing +1 504-941-9984 and entering the following‬ PIN: ‪775 520 609‬#.

Download the Folklife Network grant guidelines to learn more about the program.



Schedules occur on the MSAC fiscal year, which begins in July and ends in June:

October 1: Applications open

November 8: Call for panelists

November 15: Applications due

November 22: Call for panelists closes

January: Review of applications

July: Applicants notified of status; funds processed for successful grantees

June: Final report instructions released

July: Final reports due


Past grantees

The Folklife Network is a formal granting program growing from recommendations by folklife artists, folklife specialists, and other cultural workers during program revision activities facilitated by MSAC in 2019. The need for a Folklife Network granting program is based on foregoing long-term and short-term collaborations between MSAC’s Maryland Traditions folklife program and organizations supporting folklife in Maryland. The collaborations below illustrate some of the organizations at which folklife activities have been supported by Maryland Traditions since 2001. Current regional folklife centers are marked with an asterisk (*).

  • Arts and Humanities Council of Montgomery County (Montgomery County)
  • Baltimore City Heritage Area (Baltimore City)
  • Chesapeake Bay Maritime Museum (Talbot County)
  • Coastal Heritage Alliance (Talbot County)
  • Creative Alliance (Baltimore City)
  • Frederick Community College (Frederick County)
  • Frostburg State University (Allegany County)*
  • Maryland Historical Trust (Anne Arundel County)
  • National Council for the Traditional Arts (Montgomery County)
  • Prince George’s African American Museum and Cultural Center (Prince George’s County)
  • Prince George’s Arts and Humanities Council (Prince George’s County)
  • Sandy Spring Museum (Montgomery County)*
  • St. Mary’s College of Maryland (St. Mary’s County)*
  • University of Maryland, Baltimore County (Baltimore County)*
  • Ward Museum of Wildfowl Art, Salisbury University (Wicomico County)*