United Arts Grants Orange County Venue Subsidy Funding for Arts and Culture

About the Grant

Through Orange County Arts & Cultural Affairs, United Arts of Central Florida is offering a grant to subsidize the use of event venues in Orange County for an exhibition or performance. This program addresses the need for arts and cultural programming that will appeal to a wide range of audiences, particularly racially/ethnically diverse communities, in Central Florida.

This program offers the opportunity to present cultural programming at a publicly accessible venue, providing a performance platform that elevates the production value and access opportunities for all 501(c)(3) nonprofits in Orange County, Florida.

Maximum Request Amount:

Up to half/50% of the total venue rental cost, with a limit of $45,000 (for the first round of this funding cycle).

Program Requirements:

Organizations may apply for a season subsidy, or one event/festival. Funding is limited; not all projects will receive full funding. Organizations applying for a season using more than one venue must have received a grant from United Arts through the Operating Support, Diversity in the Arts, or Project Grant categories, or Orange County Cultural Tourism, Facilities, or DEI/Sustainability Pilot Funding. This program is to subsidize short-term venue rental costs and related costs charged by the venue ONLY. It does not cover staffing, artists, or other programmatic expenses unrelated to the venue rental. For a list of eligible and ineligible costs, please refer to the Grant Eligibility section.

In all cases, eligibility decisions are determined by United Arts. Each organization is limited to one Venue Subsidy Grant application per year (October 1 through September 30 period). Approval of one year of funding carries no assurance of funding in subsequent years. Applicants must be in good standing with United Arts concerning any prior grant reporting, if applicable.

Organization Eligibility:

To apply, the organization must have:

  • Nonprofit 501(c)(3) corporate status, registered in Orange County and in good standing with State of Florida Division of Corporations and the IRS (United Arts will verify current 501(c)(3) status at www.irs.gov and current good standing with the State of Florida Division of Corporations at www.sunbiz.org.)
  • Arts/cultural primary mission; providing cultural programming (defined as exhibition, production, presentation, or instruction of performing, visual, literary or media arts, the sciences, or history and heritage)

Organizations are NOT eligible if they are:

  • A public or private entity governed by a county, municipality, school district, community college, college, university, or an agency of state government
  • Media company (TV/radio/print)
  • Nonprofits whose primary mission is not the arts, science, history, or culture
  • Faith-based organizations
  • Fraternal or sports organizations
  • Political causes, candidates, organizations, or campaigns
  • Organizations that are adjuncts to for-profit organizations. (“Friends of” organizations are eligible to apply only in lieu of the parent nonprofit organization.)

Grant Eligibility:

Proposals must be for event(s) that occur in a venue, accessible to the public, based in Orange County, Florida. Programming must involve arts and culture, science or history.

Inclusive of:

  • A single exhibition, production, or performance
  • A season of productions/exhibitions
  • Organizations may only apply once within the October 1 through September 30 period, by the application deadline
  • Priority will be given to organizations performing in underserved communities and/or appealing to diverse communities
  • As part of the application, applicant must provide a formal quote from the venue with confirmed production dates. Related venue costs must be included and itemized in the quote, such as security, stagehands, sound/lighting engineers, ushers, custodial and other costs charged by the venue. To release funds, a final signed contract or rental settlement from the venue must be supplied
  • Partnerships with culturally diverse organizations are encouraged. United Arts can help connect you with diverse organizations; contact Outreach@UnitedArtsCFL.org
  • Productions must be held in venues open to the public, such as Dr. Phillips Center for the Performing Arts, Plaza Live, The Abbey, Orange County Convention Center, parks, community centers, churches, and school auditoriums or other cultural organizations’ venues. For other ideas of possible eligible venues, check out Orange County’s cultural facilities map or the listing of venues that rent space for performances or exhibitions.

Funding Decision Process:

No review panel. Applications will be reviewed by staff or eligibility and confirmation of the proposal quote(s) for the venue(s). Applications will be funded based on the funding available as a percentage of the eligible requests.

Grant Awards and Payments:

Awards: For most Venue Subsidy requests, the Award agreement will be updated in two parts. The first award (partial amount) will be posted to the dashboard with a Funding Agreement (followup form). For awards of up to $2,500, the award agreement will be complete with this first round.

Upon receipt of the new/additional Venue Subsidy Funding from Orange County, grantees will receive an update to the Award Agreement, indicating the NEW, TOTAL, "UP TO" amount of the award, toward the maximum of 50% of the venue rental costs.

Payments: For most awards, the payment will be made in up to two disbursements: one half upon acceptance of the Funding Agreement, and the balance after the project has been completed, paid and submitted for reimbursement. IF, you have already completed the project (all dates) by the time you receive the funding agreement, you may apply for the entire amount in one payment (if all program dates have been completed, and the venue costs are documented, paid and provided in the report upload.

  1. The first half (50% of the award) will be paid upon acceptance of the agreement and insurance certificate, and contingent on receipt of the county funding for this program.
  2. The final amount (up to 50% of total venue costs billed through the venue) is in reimbursement, upon documentation of completion of the event(s) and payment of the venue's final invoice or settlement billing.

For more information, download the Guidelines below.

Important Dates

Application period is closed for this cycle (Apply online by: Tuesday, October 31, 2023, 11:59 p.m.)

Workshop (virtual): Wednesday, October 4, 2023, 3-4:30 p.m. (recorded webinar to be posted); workshop presentation PDF linked here.

Staff review: Through December 2023

Award allocations and agreements issued: Through Jan 15, 2024

Project Period: Events must occur between Oct 1, 2023 through September 30, 2024 

Funding Available: January 9, 2024 (first funding pool of $551,434, includes carryover of $51,434); this is equal to 67.9% of all requests, with a cap of $45,000.

An IMPORTANT NOTE on Venue Subsidy Funding:
As of 11/28/23, additional funding was approved by the Orange County Board of County Commissioners and will become available, but until that will be processed through the county's purchasing/contracting and funds distribution), we can only award the initial funding pool.)
Payments will be made upon each nonprofit organization's acceptance of the funding agreement (in the grant portal), and processing of the first 50% of the initial award. If not funded at 100% of the eligible request, additional funds will be allocated to make each applicant's request fully funded at up to 50% of total eligible venue rental expenses in the requests.


Orange County Arts & Cultural Affairs "leaper" logo
Verbiage: “This project is funded in part by Orange County Government through the Arts & Cultural Affairs Program.”


The application window is closed at this time, and will reopen again next fall.

Learn How to apply

This video guide on the right is designed to help grant holders manage their grants and clarifies our expectations and requirements. For more how-to videos, please go to our YouTube channel.

video guide to help grant holders manage their grants
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