Thessalon, ON – On Saturday, Thinking Rock Community Arts held an Open House to celebrate the official opening of their new programming space at 199 Main Street in downtown Thessalon. A $50,000 Community Building Fund grant awarded by the Government of Ontario and the Ontario Trillium Foundation in 2021 has enabled Thinking Rock to continue its operations and deliver programs over the past year. This support has increased organizational capacity and stability, enabling Thinking Rock to secure a larger, dedicated programming space.
Upon learning of the grant, Algoma-Manitoulin MPP Michael Mantha said, “I am very pleased that the Ontario Trillium Foundation is so generously supporting Thinking Rock.” Mantha explained that while all of Ontario enjoys growing and broadening multicultural identity, “Here in the North we enjoy a unique blend of cultural and artistic identities that are not commonly found elsewhere. Thinking Rock provides the opportunity to explore and develop our unique backgrounds to create identities not available anywhere else in the province.” Mantha said he looks forward to observing the continued outstanding successes that Algoma-Manitoulin has been enjoying for some years now.
In addition to securing a larger, dedicated programming and co-working space, this $50,000 Community Building Fund grant enabled Thinking Rock to hire new staff, and create a COVID-19 re-opening and recovery plan that will support the organization in the short-, medium- and long term as it emerges from the pandemic.
“We are grateful to the Ontario Trillium Foundation. Their support over the past year has enabled us to strengthen and stabilize core operations, look hopefully ahead and plan for the future,” said Miranda Bouchard, Artistic Director of Thinking Rock Community Arts. “Securing our bigger space and working with new, dedicated staff to build, support and sustain our organization’s capacity have helped us to survive and thrive throughout the pandemic, and to carry what we’ve learned and accomplished through this project into our future community-centred work.”
Thinking Rock Community Arts is a nonprofit organization based in Thessalon, Ontario that co-creates art with and for the people living along the North Shore of Lake Huron, from Genaabaajing (Serpent River First Nation) to Baawaating (Sault Ste. Marie) and all points in between. We invite people of all ages, Nations, abilities, backgrounds and identities to join us in playing, making and dreaming about this special place we call home – as it was, as it is, and as it might yet be. Learn more about our work at www.thinkingrock.ca