Freedom's Frontier Interpretive Grants awarded to partners

Freedom's Frontier National Heritage Area News Release

Jim Ogle, Executive Director
(785) 856-3635
(785) 409-9943 - cell

Julie McPike, Managing Director
(785) 856-5283
(785) 424-4453 - cell

Liz Hobson, Education and Interpretation Manager
(785) 856-2333
(785) 424-5086 - cell

Sonia Smith, Communications and Marketing Manager
(785) 856-5304
(785) 840-5499 - cell

Freedom's Frontier Interpretive Grants awarded to partners

Freedom's Frontier National Heritage Area established the Interpretive Grant Program in 2012, and has since awarded more than 90 grants to partnering organizations to fund projects that interpret the heritage area themes of shaping the frontier, the Missouri-Kansas Border War, and the enduring struggle for freedom, while incorporating stories that preserve local history. Grant applications are accepted four times a year, on the 15th of February, May, August and November. Organizations with signed Partnership Pledges, located within the borders of the bi-state, 41-county heritage area are eligible to apply. Additional guidelines and information is available at www.freedomsfrontier.org/uploads/resources/Interpretive Grant Application-6-2015.pdf.

This is a peer-reviewed grant, and partners in Freedom's Frontier have selected the following grant projects to fund in the first quarter of 2017:

Little House on the Prairie Museum was awarded $4,058 to replace three existing signs which describe the history of the structures that embody the story of Laura Ingalls Wilder traveling in a covered wagon trying to conquer the new land of the undiscovered frontiers. This project also includes funding for a new brochure and 11 postcards. Little House on the Prairie Museum is 13 miles southwest of Independence, Kansas. It is a non-profit 501(c)3, whose goal is to continue to educate the public about the author Laura Ingalls Wilder, Little House on the Prairie Books, and life on the Prairie in the late 1800s and early 1900s. The museum stands on the original land where Laura Ingalls Wilder lived with her family in a one-room log cabin in 1870. Memories of her time here later inspired her to pen the indelible classic: Little House on the Prairie. She then created a series of nine books geared towards children but loved by all. The books depicted the adventures of her family as they traveled across American pioneer country in a covered wagon. This year is the museum's 40th anniversary and Laura Ingalls Wilder's 150th birthday. After the bi-yearly symposium on Laura Ingalls Wilder in Mansfield called Laurapolooza, the 1,500 people have been invited to drive down to visit this site. They get about 20,000 visitors a year representing every state, and about 40 countries.

Website: https://www.littlehouseontheprairiemuseum.com/
Contact: Kristin Schodorf, Executive Director & Project Manager
(620) 289-4238

Raytown High School was awarded $4,850 to expand the efforts of students and teachers at Raytown High School in continuing the Race Project KC initiative, reading and discussing the details of the book Some of My Best Friends Are Black, accompanying it with discussions with author Tanner Colby. In partnership with local educators, Johnson County Library helps facilitate intentional dialogue about the structural forms of racism in America and Kansas City. The project focuses on the American education system in particular, attempting to conduct a sincere investigation into the history, causes, and potential solutions to systemic, structural racism. At the same time, the library provides students a chance to share their own unique stories, break down barriers between diverse groups of students, and use their diversity to understand collective strengths.

Collective objectives of the Race Project KC include:

A sincere investigation into the history of racial politics in Kansas City and its schools and how that affects us today.
Intentional and multiple dialogues between diverse students of the Kansas City area, held digitally and in-person.
A counter-narrative that allows Kansas City youth to tell their stories, react to other's stories, and break down barriers.

This grant is helping expand an already successful program that is now growing beyond Kansas City and including other locations, including Lawrence. Author Tanner Colby's recent visit included a stop in Lawrence in April.

Website: http://raceprojectkc.weebly.com/about.html
Contact: Jeff Dierking, Raytown C-2 School District High School English Language Arts Coordinator - jeff.dierking@raytownschools.org
Angel Tucker - Youth Services Manager, Johnson County Library
(913) 826-4460

Shawnee Town 1929 Museum was awarded $4,350 for The Enduring Power of Story. This grant project funding to will engage museum visitors in the important work that story plays in all of our lives. Through the power of memory in intergenerational and teacher training workshops as well as folk tales and fables, the museum seeks to draw upon program participants' experiences to foster a love of history and a heightened awareness of shared, sometimes diverse, experiences and struggles. Shawnee Town 1929 invites visitors to experience a typical day in and around the farm community of Shawnee, Kansas, in the 1920s through authentic and engaging exhibits, programs, events, and historical collections.

This grant will fund a series of workshops and programs:

Makin' a Way out of No Way, is a series of four classes/workshops offered through Shawnee's Parks and Recreation Department throughout the year, February 11th, May 6th, August 5th, and November 4th. It focuses on the seasonal aspects of family life and the ties that bind families and communities together during those tweaks added by each new generation.
Fried Chicken and the Best Little Chicken Story This Side of the Missouri occurs on June 21, 2017. Dr. Carol Kariotis, retired educator and storyteller won first prize in the 2016 Missouri State Liar's Contest for Storytellers. She will share this story with visitors and invite them to share their own chicken stories from family experiences as a youth or young adult to experience of raising chickens in the suburbs or on farms now.
Once upon a Time - Jazz Storytelling on July 6th. The Jazz Storytelling group from the American Jazz Museum will share stores relating to the history of jazz vocally and musically. Their program is specifically for children. Families will then be invited to listen to music-related stories by storytellers from the River and Prairie Storyweavers.
The final part of the project will occur in February or March, 2018 - a teacher's workshop on the use of storytelling in the classroom. Judy Sima, educator and storyteller, will give two workshops which encompass the disciplines of Social Studies and English Arts. This full day program will include time for touring the museum and talking with our 1920s costumed Interpreters.

Website: http://www.shawneetown.org/
Contact: Sharron G. Uhler, Curator of Education, Shawnee Town 1929 MuseumShawnee, KS 66203, 11501 W. 57th St.,
suhler@cityofshawnee.org, (913) 742-6423

Interpretive Grants range from under $500 to $5,000. Grants over $1,500 must include a match toward the project by the recipient of at least half of the amount of the award. This match can include in-kind services, donations, and volunteer time, and does not necessarily require a monetary match. Grant applicants must meet with a Freedom's Frontier staff member for a grant consultation by the first day of the month in which they are submitting their application (the first of February, May, August or November).

For more information about the Interpretive Grant Program or other grant projects, contact Education and Interpretation Manager Liz Hobson at (785) 856-2333, or by email at ehobson@freedomsfrontier.org.

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Heritage Area Fast Facts

Mission: Freedom's Frontier National Heritage Area (FFNHA) is dedicated to building awareness of the struggles for freedom in western Missouri and eastern Kansas. These diverse, interwoven, and nationally important stories grew from a unique physical and cultural landscape. FFNHA inspires respect for multiple perspectives and empowers residents to preserve and share these stories. We achieve our goals through interpretation, preservation, conservation, and education for all residents and visitors.

Kansas Counties: Allen · Anderson · Atchison · Bourbon · Chautauqua · Cherokee · Clay · Coffey · Crawford· Douglas · Franklin · Geary · Jackson · Jefferson · Johnson · Labette · Leavenworth · Linn · Miami · Montgomery · Neosho · Osage · Pottawatomie · Riley · Shawnee · Wabaunsee · Wilson · Woodson · Wyandotte

Missouri Counties: Barton · Bates · Buchanan · Cass · Clay · Jackson · Johnson · Lafayette · Platte · Ray · St. Clair · Vernon

Established: October 12, 2006

Web site:

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