Valley Shakespeare Festival receives CARES grant

Valley Shakespeare Festival popular tour production of the Bard's comedy "The Two Gentlemen of Verona" is returning to Plumb Memorial Library on Friday, Oct. 4, at 6 p.m.

Valley Shakespeare Festival popular tour production of the Bard’s comedy “The Two Gentlemen of Verona” is returning to Plumb Memorial Library on Friday, Oct. 4, at 6 p.m.

Contributed photo

SHELTON — Valley Shakespeare Festival has received a needed financial boost.

The Shelton-based organization is among 33 nonprofit arts organizations in Connecticut’s 4th District to receive a Connecticut CARES Act emergency relief grant. The Connecticut Office of the Arts awarded $350,000 in grants statewide.

“Congratulations to the 33 arts organizations on their CARES Act grants,” said U.S. Rep. Jim Himes, D-Conn. “These grants will be used to preserve jobs and maintain Southwest Connecticut’s vibrant creative sector.

“The presence of artists and entrepreneurs in our communities boosts our economy by attracting tourism and encouraging economic investment,” added Himes. “It is vital that we continue cultivating and encouraging art in Connecticut and across the country.”

Himes co-sponsored and voted for the CARES Act, which was signed into law on March 27. The economic rescue package provided relief for individuals and businesses through a series of programs, including the CARES Act Emergency Relief Grant.

Through the program, the Connecticut Office of the Arts distributed $350,000 to 122 nonprofit arts organizations statewide in one-time grants ranging from $1,500 to $3,000 per organization. Recipients were randomly selected with attention to geographic distribution.

Valley Shakespeare Festival has been presenting free Shakespeare plays in Veteran’s Memorial Park in Shelton since 2013.

The Valley Shakespeare Festival has also started the popular Shakespeare in the Bar series as well as offering a touring company that goes through the community with a fully staged 70-minute production.

As Connecticut continues to reopen and in an effort to keep actors, crew and audiences safe, the organization, as stated on its website, has opted for a three-actor Cyrano as its free Shakespeare in the Park offering.

The event will run Sept. 3 to 6. Coronavirus guidelines will be posted on the organization’s website soon.