Passport to Culture: Creating Opportunities for All

Project Details by Fiscal Year
2013 Fiscal Year Funding Amount
Fund Source
Arts & Cultural Heritage Fund
Recipient Type
Non-Profit Business/Entity
Start Date
December 2012
End Date
June 2013
Activity Type
Counties Affected
Crow Wing
St. Louis
Crow Wing
St. Louis
Project Overview

Passport to Culture: Removing barriers to participation will serve 1500 households, reaching approximately 6,000 children and their adult caregivers from across the region. Passport to Culture eliminates the financial barriers to participation by families most vulnerable in our society, providing membership, enhanced by direct program opportunities targeted to serve low income households designed to create a pattern of use of cultural organizations by families.

About the Issue

The Duluth Children’s Museum recently (May 29, 2012) relocated into the heart of the densest family housing community in the city: Lincoln Park. Families in Lincoln Park are specifically hit by challenges of household income. Over 40% of the households within 5 miles of the Museum with school age children are living below a livable household income. Few of these families see the opportunity to access a children's museum as within their economic means without the support of scholarships. At the same time, after relocating membersip has growing by over 200% each month.

Attendance continues to grow and special programming is attracting attendance from the community. Families are telling the museum that is because of increased community access and increased community programming that they are now wanting to joing the Duluth Children's Museum.

Legal Citation / Subdivision
Minnesota Law 2011 (Special Session), Chp. 6, Art. 4, Sec. 2, Subd. 8
Appropriation Language

Children's Museums Grants. $500,000 the first year and $500,000 the second year are for a competitive Arts and Cultural Heritage Grants Program-Children's Museums. The board of directors shall solicit proposals and award grants to children's museum for projects and programs that maintain or promote our cultural heritage.

2013 Fiscal Year Funding Amount
Proposed Measurable Outcome(s)

1. Families from target communities and households will visit the Duluth Children's Museum on a regular basis.2. Membership will grow to include 1500 Passport to Culture households by June 30, 2013.3. First Friday and Third Thursday events will attract an average attendance of 250 children and adults each.4. Families served by Passport to Culture memberships will access the Duluth Children's Museum during general museum programming.

Measurable Outcome(s)

1. Demand for the Passport to Culture program was especially high in 2013. Many factors influenced this result, most notably the announcement of the effects of sequestration on head start families.
2. First Friday’s which is an intensive family event, open to the entire region, continues to build and draw people who have never visited the Museum. Third Thursday’s, new this year, is an added opportunity to offer intensive programming targeted on health, nutrition and gardening “Grow what you eat” concepts for example. By providing two programs that have a target and focus the effort to encourage attendance at other general museum events is paying off. We are able to effectively market to the key communities we seek to reach with more intensive program offerings.
3. Currently, with supplemental support from the Legacy funds, we are installing the hardware, software and doing the data conversion to track all attendance. Very soon we will be able to report attendance by membership, frequency of visits and the number of household members who attend the museum on daily and monthly counts. We know from experience we have a high level of repeat visitorship, soon we will be able to support that with concrete data.

Recipient Board Members
Patty Cartier (Chair, Capital Campaign), James A. Christensen (Treasurer of the Board), Jeff Hakala, John E. Erickson (Vice-Chair of the Board), Kyle K. Johnson (Chair of the Board), Kelly Davidson, Barbara Payette (Past Board Chair), Scott Graden, Stephen Sydow (Secretary of the Board), Dana Kazel, JoAnn Mattson, Kyle Terrio-Johnson, Ellen Evans, Paige Benson
Project Manager
First Name
Last Name
Organization Name
Duluth Children's Museum
Street Address
506 West Michigan Street
Zip Code
Administered By
Administered by

987 Ivy Avenue East
St. Paul, MN 55106

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