Community Grantmaking


Each year the North Quabbin Garlic and Arts Festival provides $5,000 in grants to support projects that propagate the values of the festival.  We have awarded over $35,000 in grants to support community building and projects in the arts, agriculture/food, energy conservation, and wellness  since 2009. Even with affordable admission, this is made possible due to a fully volunteer organizing committee, and over 150 volunteers the festival weekend! Our 2017 grants will be made following the festival. 

In 2016, The Festival provided $5,000 in grants and donations to the following North Quabbin organizations and projects including:

  • North Quabbin Community Coalition for support of their community task forces
  • North Quabbin Energy activities including printing of a local food brochure
  • North Quabbin Food a Thon for support of local pantries
  • Valuing Our Children for parenting/nurturing programs
  • Scholarship fund at the Orange Dance Studio in memory of Victoria- who loved the festival – and Leena, the young girls lost to a tragic fire
  • Clearview Compost  to provide compost to local groups in need for their projects.
  • New Salem Ag Committee for support towards a film series and pollinator garden
  • Athol Bird and Nature Club for upgrading the accessible bathroom
  • North Quabbin Pipeline Action for education and outreach
  • 1794 Meetinghouse for sponsorship of a local artist and performance
  • Solstice Riverfest towards family/children’s activities at this event
  • Quabbin Harvest Coop for beautification of grounds for a picnic/multiple use area
  • Purchase of compost/recycle bins to be loaned to other North Quabbin groups for their events.

Additionally, several local groups such as the Mahar H.S. parents, North Quabbin Trails Association, and many others assist with parking and receive a donation from the festival towards their good causes.

Festival history and philosophy of grant making: The festival has been a model for igniting local culture and economy since its inception. It is a celebration for all ages where attendees purchase directly from local artists, farmers, and food producers, thus keeping money in our region.

The Garlic and Arts Festival success and sustainability is made possible through a fully volunteer organizing committee who collectively contribute thousands of hours year round to bring the festival to fruition, plus 150 additional volunteers the weekend of the event. Each exhibitor also contributes 3-4 hours of time to help with an aspect of the festival, from press to set up, to feeding work crews, to sorting compost after the event.

A non-profit event under the fiscal umbrella of Seeds of Solidarity Education Center Inc, proceeds from the festival ensure that it continues from year to year. Thanks to the commitment of those who attend, vend, perform, and volunteer year after year, the festival can now also spread values of community building year round, and support other projects in the North Quabbin region.