(LONG BEACH, CA – June 30, 2023)
Last weekend kicked off Downtown Long Beach Alliance‘s Community Events Microgrant recipients’ events, including the first of three “Sunday Saturdays” events by World Famous V.I.P. Records at Lincoln Park.

Out of 18 applicants, 11 winners were selected by a panel of Downtown community members to receive $500 to $1,000 for this round of DLBA’s relaunched Community Events Microgrant Program. Several of these events have already made a positive impact on Downtown, including Willmore City Heritage Association’s Summer of Live Arts & Music family sing-a-long, which took place on June 24.

“The Special Events & Sponsorships Committee learned a lot while relaunching this program and looks forward to making it even bigger next fiscal year,” said Justine Nevarez, DLBA Community Outreach & Events Manager. “We couldn’t have had a better panel of judges for this application period, so a big thank you to them! DLBA is so excited to see all these amazing, diverse events come to life this summer.”

Going into the holiday weekend, grant recipient Visit Gay Long Beach’s “Cheers to Queers” event supporting the LGBTQ+ community is coming up on Friday, June 30 and recipient Loiter Galleries’ group art show, “Long Beach Calling,” featuring works by local artists curated by pro-skateboarder and Long Beach resident Steve Saiz, opens on Saturday, July 1 at 6 PM.

“The Alliance’s Community Events Microgrant will fund our group show, ‘Long Beach Calling,’ featuring local artists this Saturday, July 1,” said Vinny Picardi of Loiter Galleries. “The funds will support our efforts to create the show, pay for the expenses of opening night and beyond, and in effect bring optimism and a unique art experience to the Downtown area.”

Please join DLBA in congratulating the 11 Community Events Microgrant Winners, five of which received $1,000 in funding toward their event:

• Loiter Galleries – Long Beach Calling: $1,000
A group show of paintings and sculptures by “Us Angeles” artists, curated by Steve Saiz, pro-skateboarder and Long Beach local. “Long Beach Calling” opens Saturday, July 1, 6 to 9 PM.

• World Famous V.I.P. Records – Sunday Saturdays: $1,000
The “Sunday Saturdays” series at Lincoln Park will celebrate Gospel Music during Black Music Month on June 24, July 22 and August 26 from 1 to 5 PM. Free and open to the public, the event aims to create a relaxed and inspiring environment where families and friends can come together to enjoy the music and explore community services.

• Elite Skills Development – Memorial Exhibit: $1,000
A memorial exhibit on August 17 at Loiter Galleries to “help our community make sense of and draw redemptive lessons from the Middle Passage Slave trade, and the incredible resilience of the enslaved to survive.”

• Long Beach Disability Pride – 2nd Annual Celebration: $1,000
An annual event that highlights the diversity of the disability community, this uplifting celebration will take place at Harvey Milk Park on July 26 on the anniversary of the signing of the Americans with Disabilities Act.

• Willmore City Heritage Association – Summer of Live Arts & Music: $1,000
Events on June 24 at 5 PM and July 14 at 7 PM at Chavez Park Amphitheater featuring a family sing-a-long led by professional singers and a performance of “Twelfth Night” by Shakespeare by the Sea.

Organizations selected to receive $500 in grant funding are as follows: Visit Gay Long Beach for the “Cheers to Queers” event on June 30; International City Theatre for a Free Family Saturday program on June 17; Long Beach Post for a screening and discussion on Long Beach’s homelessness crisis on Sept. 14; Musique Sur La Mer Orchestras for a Summer Concerts at Shoreline Village series on June 25 and Aug. 27; CatPAWS for a free cat vaccination and microchip event on Sept. 30; and Long Beach Blues Society for a “Blues for All” concert series on June 24.

“After reviewing each applicant, it was obvious that we were dealing with a group of local organizations and entrepreneurs that care tremendously for their causes, and that each applicant plays a special part in the livelihood and prosperity of Downtown Long Beach,” said Wells Fargo Senior Small Business Development Representative Aaron Palmer, who was a judge on the applicant review panel.

For more upcoming events in Downtown Long Beach this summer and beyond, visit DLBA’s events calendar here.

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About DLBA: DLBA is a nonprofit, community-based organization whose mission is to cultivate, preserve and promote a healthy, safe, and prosperous Downtown. By balancing the interests of the residents, as well as businesses, the DLBA creates tangible progress by way of vested interest and solidified partnerships across local, municipal, and commercial lines. For additional information,visit www.downtownlongbeach.org, or follow on Facebook @downtownlongbeach, on Twitter @dlba and Instagram @dlba.