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Our Most Recent News Releases

Bohemian Foundation Pharos Fund Awards $500K to Local Nonprofits

FORT COLLINS, Colorado, May 9, 2017 – Bohemian Foundation today announced that it awarded $510,000 to 32 local nonprofits working to encourage and enable youth to thrive, empower individuals and families on the path toward economic stability and strengthen our vibrant Fort Collins community. Bohemian Foundation awards Pharos Fund grants twice every year. Since its inception in 2001, Bohemian Foundation Community Programs has awarded more than $17,210,000 million in Pharos Fund grants to a variety of nonprofits serving the Fort Collins area.

“We believe these organizations have valuable insight into the most pressing needs in our community,” said Sara Maranowicz, Bohemian Foundation’s Community Programs Director. “We continue to support organizations with the expertise to deliver responsive strategies to address local community needs.”

Pharos Fund is a responsive grant making program of Bohemian Foundation that makes awards up to $30,000 to eligible 501(c)(3) nonprofit organizations and governmental units. A committee comprised of Bohemian Foundation board members, Bohemian staff and community members selects grantees through a competitive application process.

Full List of Round 1, 2017 Pharos Fund Recipients:

A total of $510,000 was awarded to 32 organizations.

  • Organization Name
  • Project
  • Award
  • Organization Name Book Trust
  • Project General Support
  • Award $30,000
  • Organization Name Homeless Gear
  • Project Children in Need
  • Award $10,000
  • Total
  • $500,000

Bohemian Foundation will begin accepting applications for the next Pharos Fund round in August 2017. Visit for more information.

Bohemian Foundation is a private family foundation established in 2001. Based in Fort Collins, Colo., Bohemian Foundation works to empower citizens and impact communities through its responsive grant making programs and special initiatives.


Pianos About Town Returns to Old Town Square to Celebrate Seventh Season

FORT COLLINS, Colorado, May 8, 2017 – On May 10 after months of indoor hibernation, painted pianos will emerge in outdoor locations across Fort Collins as part of the Pianos About Town project, a collaborative effort among Bohemian Foundation, the City of Fort Collins Art in Public Places program and the Fort Collins Downtown Development Authority.

Over the course of the year, local artists will paint 13 pianos donated by community members. Local artists and artist groups selected to paint pianos this year are Chris Bates; Edurado Casas; Chelsea Ermer; Carla Gamboa and Marina Avila; Jane Glotzer; Kris Grauvogl; Jana Leigh Hillstrom and Leisha Lawson; Pamela Kraft; Sarah J. Kuhn; Barbara and Rachel Lacerte; National Colorado Intertribal Powwow Association (NCIPA); Werner Schreiber; and Larry Tucci.

The Art in Action tent and summer painting will return to the south side of Fort Collins’ Old Town Square. The public is invited to stop by to watch the work in progress. On May 10, local artists Marina Avila and Carla Gamboa will begin working on the first 2017 piano.

“We’re excited to launch another colorful season of Pianos About Town in the community,” said Tom Scharf, Bohemian Foundation’s Music Programs director. “Bringing together visual art and music in a community that really embraces both art forms is special. This program has high visibility and great participation and continues to remind us that Fort Collins is a great place to be."

Since the program’s start in 2010, 46 local artists have been employed to paint 80 pianos.

“Over the past several years of the program we’ve employed a wide range of artists: a high school student, Colorado State University students, as well as professional artists,” said Ellen Martin, Visual Arts Administrator for Art in Public Places. “This season, 10 of the 13 artists are new to the Pianos About Town program.”

Pianos About Town at a Glance:

Pianos About Town is intended to be a fun, interactive art installation that creates an additional element of whimsy and surprise in Fort Collins. The project is a public art initiative that provides paid work to local visual artists, that gives the public the opportunity to observe these artists work in real time, that showcases the work of these artists throughout town, and that brings opportunities for spontaneous musical expression to the streets of Fort Collins.

The original inspiration for Pianos About Town comes from British artist Luke Jerram, who created a 60-piano installation that toured the world, stopping in New York City in June 2010. Pianos About Town was also inspired by a similar project on Denver’s 16th Street Mall. The first pianos were placed in Downtown Fort Collins during the 2010 holiday season and were an instant hit. This is the seventh season for Pianos About Town.

Pianos are acquired through donations made by community members looking for a new home for their used instruments. Pianos are picked up, free of charge, from their previous homes and brought to a storage area where they are cleaned, tuned, prepped for painting, and readied for the outside elements. After that, the painting begins. Selected local artists spend approximately two weeks painting their piano in downtown Fort Collins, outdoors in a public location when weather permits. Once painted, each finished piano enters into rotation at Pianos About Town locations throughout Fort Collins. Area businesses play a key role in the success of the project by “adopting” the painted pianos and covering them during inclement weather.

Please download the full news release PDF to view artist profiles.


Survey Launches to Assess Need for Affordable Housing and Workspace for Arts, Cultural and Creative Communities

FORT COLLINS, Colo., April 25, 2017—Individuals, organizations and businesses in the arts, cultural and creative communities are invited to participate in an affordable housing and workspace survey that launches today. The online survey, conducted by Artspace, a nonprofit real estate developer, is available at to residents of Fort Collins and surrounding areas.

The survey is the next step in a process the City of Fort Collins, Fort Collins Downtown Development Authority and Bohemian Foundation began when they invited Artspace to visit Fort Collins last October. The three partners assembled a core group of community arts leaders to help plan and facilitate Artspace’s Preliminary Feasibility Visit. During this preliminary visit, Artspace conducted a series of community meetings and focus groups to assess the feasibility of creating an affordable housing, studio and workspace project designed for artists, musicians and other individual creatives and organizations/businesses. Based on the findings from this Preliminary Feasibility Visit, Artspace recommended conducting an Arts Market Study to provide an in-depth analysis of the space needs of the local arts/creative community.

The Arts Market Study will consist of two versions of an online survey where respondents can answer questions about their space needs as a member of the creative community. One survey is an individual artist survey, the other survey is for leaders of arts and cultural organizations and creative businesses. All in the arts, cultural and creative communities in Fort Collins and surrounding areas are encouraged to participate in the surveys, which will remain online for eight weeks, closing on June 19.

The surveys will provide data about how much housing and work space the local arts community can use and what design features and amenities are desired. Resulting data can help attract funders, encourage the creation of space by private developers and advance a possible project. In addition, survey responses will influence the location and type of new spaces, design features, amenities, programs and affordability.

About the Partners

The City of Fort Collins, Fort Collins Downtown Development Authority, and Bohemian Foundation are the three partners that invited Artspace to Fort Collins to explore the potential of developing affordable spaces where artists/creatives of all disciplines may live and work and arts/cultural organizations and creative businesses can thrive.

About the Core Group

The partners assembled a Core Group of community arts leaders who helped facilitate Artspace’s Preliminary Feasibility Visit and who continue to engage artists and creatives in next steps.

About Artspace

Artspace is the nation’s leader in artist-led community transformation, with 46 projects in operation across the country and another dozen in development, representing a $600 million investment in America’s arts infrastructure. With headquarters in Minneapolis and offices in Denver, Los Angeles, New Orleans, New York, Seattle and Washington D.C., Artspace is America’s leading developer of arts facilities. To date, Artspace has completed nearly 2,000 affordable live/work units for artists and their families as well as more than a million square feet of non-residential space for artists and arts organizations. For more information about Artspace visit


Dozens of Fort Collins Organizations and Businesses Will Offer Free Services to Individuals and Families at Project Homeless Connect

FORT COLLINS, Colorado, March 17, 2017 - Fort Collins’ annual Project Homeless Connect is scheduled to take place on April 7, 8 a.m.-noon. Project Homeless Connect is a one-day, one-stop event on that offers a range of free services to hundreds of individuals and families who are experiencing homelessness or who are at risk of homelessness.

Project Homeless Connect will take place at the Northside Aztlan Center, 112 Willow St. A free breakfast will be available in the morning, and a free BBQ lunch will be served from 11 a.m.-1 p.m. Nearly 40 local nonprofits, government agencies and businesses will provide on-site services. Bohemian Foundation; the Murphy Center; and Colorado State University Student Leadership, Involvement and Community Engagement (SLiCE) co-produce the event with support from United Way of Larimer County.

Free services this year will include basic car inspection; bike repair; medical screenings; basic dental screenings for adults and children; eye exams; family photos; haircuts; housing information; veterans’ services; ID and legal services; employment services; counseling; government benefits; child care and children’s activities; bus passes; massages; toiletry packages; pet health care; and pet food.

During the event, each participant is paired one-to-one with a volunteer who helps the participant navigate the variety of services available. Last year, SLiCE recruited nearly 400 CSU students and Fort Collins community members to volunteer.

About Project Homeless Connect

The Project Homeless Connect concept originated in San Francisco in 2004. In 2005, the U.S. Interagency Council on Homelessness launched the National Project Homeless Connect Partnership. Since 2008, more than 200 cities across the U.S., Canada and Australia have adopted the initiative. Fort Collins welcomed its first Project Homeless Connect in 2010. Since then, more than 12,600 individuals and families experiencing homelessness in the Fort Collins community have participated.


Pianos About Town Program Seeks Artists

FORT COLLINS, Colo., January 23, 2017 - Pianos About Town, an interactive public art program in Fort Collins, announced today that it is seeking artists or artist teams to paint or artistically decorate pianos in 2017.

This year for the first time, the program will offer two different sessions designed to provide resources for potential applicants; however, neither session is required in order to apply. During the first session, potential applicants will hear a presentation about the application process and will have opportunities to ask questions. The second session is an open house and application review, during which program staff will work one-on-one with attendees to review their applications and make application recommendations.

Applicants must provide services within Poudre School District boundary. Applicants do not need to be headquartered in Fort Collins to receive funding. However, applicants must serve clients within the Poudre School District boundary or have a direct impact on individuals in the grantmaking area.

Application Information

The program is looking for diversity in artwork styles and concepts, with a preference for emerging artists and new and exciting ideas. Selected artists will receive an honorarium of $1,000. To apply, artists must submit a letter of intent and concept rendering. The application deadline is 5 p.m. MST on March 6. An Art in Public Places committee selects artists each year. For further information and to apply, visit

Session I: Presentation and Q&A

Jan. 31, 6-7:30 p.m.

The Music District, 639 S. College Ave., Fort Collins

This session will include a presentation at 6:30 p.m. about the application and review process. Ren Burke, a past Pianos About Town artist, will offer tips to new and returning applicants. Handouts will be provided and program staff will be available to answer questions during the rest of the session.

Session II: Open House and Application Review

Feb. 21, 4-6:30 p.m.

Community Creative Center, 200 Matthews St., Fort Collins

At this drop-in session, staff will be available to sit with applicants one-on-one to review applications and make application recommendations. Staff also will be available to provide general information for applicants who were unable to attend the first information session. Information about other artist opportunities offered by the City of Fort Collins will be available.

About Pianos About Town

As part of the Pianos About Town program, local artists transform donated pianos into visual art. Once completed, the pianos take on their new status as interactive public art throughout Fort Collins. Pianos About Town started in 2010 as a collaboration among Bohemian Foundation, the Downtown Development Authority and the City of Fort Collins Art in Public Places Program.