The CG Mosaic planning team

The CG Mosaic team, from left, includes City Clerk Gloria Leija, Stacey Seaman, Rina Rien, Casa Grande Mayor Craig McFarland, Regis Sommers and Erica Herman.

CASA GRANDE — A pair of grants from the Flinn Foundation will help ensure that the CG Mosaic event continues into a second year.

Casa Grande Main Street and the BlackBox Foundation are among six Arizona-based arts organizations that will each receive $10,000 from the Flinn Foundation.

Both organizations will use the money to continue the CG Mosaic event for a second year, said Casa Grande Main Street Director Rina Rien, who is also a member of the CG Mosaic committee.

“These grants ensure that small, rural nonprofits can continue doing what they’re doing,” Rien said.

Statewide, the Flinn Foundation is issuing $60,000 in grants to spur engagement between communities and small-town organizations like Casa Grande Main Street and the BlackBox Foundation.

The Flinn Foundation is privately endowed and has a mission of improving the quality of life in Arizona to benefit future generations.

Casa Grande Main Street is known for its work promoting and marketing the historic downtown district and is an advocate for downtown revitalization and historic preservation while also hosting downtown events such as a street fair and car show.

BlackBox Foundation is a nonprofit organization formed in 2012 that produces community theater and other arts events, supports arts education and classes for youth and teens, and advocates for the arts in Casa Grande and Pinal County.

Both organizations were involved in the CG Mosaic festival, a day-long celebration of arts in culture that was held in downtown Casa Grande in November.

The festival featured hands-on arts opportunities, musical performances, theater events and other activities.

It was funded by an Arizona Creative Communities grant from the Arizona Commission on the Arts.

“It was a one-shot deal,” Rien said. “To continue into a second year, CG Mosaic needed another grant. These grants ensure CG Mosaic will continue into another year.”

A date for the 2019 event has not yet been set but Rien said that the goal of the second festival will be the same as the first — to bridge the gaps between various groups and celebrate local art.

The Creative Communities Program provides funding to arts and culture organizations within small and rural communities that have participated in the AZ Creative Communities Institute, a program of the Arizona Commission on the Arts, the Herberger Institute for Design and the Arts at Arizona State University and Southwest Folklife Alliance, a nonprofit affiliate of the University of Arizona, a press release from the Flinn Foundation said.

The Creative Communities Initiative brings together small teams of local leaders and artists to learn from one another and local and national experts in the arts. The teams enrich their communities through projects that have ranged from murals painted by the public to development of a video-based story collection.

The four other grantees in the program are:

  • Border Arts Corridor in Douglas, which is working to restore the Grand Theatre to provide a vibrant cultural center in downtown Douglas.
  • Littlewood Fine Art and Community Co-op in Yuma, which offers classes, gallery exhibitions, internships and special events with a focus on painting, ceramics, music, woodworking and other arts.
  • Yuma Art Center and Historic Yuma Theatre in Yuma, which has a summer mural program, screens dozens of films and coordinates festivals and special events. The Historic Yuma Theatre, which dates to 1912, has nearly 650 seats.
  • Summer Youth Musical Theatre Program in Globe, for its live-theater opportunities and programs in local schools.

Melissa St. Aude is the Arts & Entertainment editor at PinalCentral. She can be reached at