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Capitol Hill’s Neumos, Vermillion, and Century Ballroom get boost from King County arts COVID-19 relief fund

(Image: Century Ballroom)

A handful of Capitol Hill venues are among dozens of King County clubs, theaters, and museums to receive nearly $2 million in grants for independent arts businesses and nonprofits hard hit by the COVID-19 economic crisis.

Neumos, Barboza, Vermillion, and The Century Ballroom were awarded a nearly $100,000 combined from the King County grants backed by the federal CARES Act.

“I couldn’t be more grateful for the support from King County, nor could it have come at a better time. All music and nightlife venues need right now is financial support, pure and simple,” Hallie Kuperman of The Century Ballroom said. “If we want our arts community and economy to rebound, we need money to get us through this period. We will wait until it is safe for patrons and staff to operate again, which means our doors will be shut for longer than most. Thank you, Executive Constantine and King County for recognizing the importance of arts in our community.”

CHS reported here on worries within Capitol Hill’s live music community about the unique challenges for clubs with tours and performances disrupted by the ongoing COVID-19 crisis. Erin Carnes of 14th and Madison’s Chop Suey said the threat goes beyond the business model. Live music is a neighborhood asset. “We are cultural spaces for people to come into together,” she said.

Meanwhile, the Capitol Hill area’s remaining live theater groups are also finding new ways to stay in motion during the crisis.

The county says the grants may be used to reimburse costs between March 1 and December, “such as payroll, rent, mortgage payments (excluding property taxes), healthcare insurance for employees, and utility expenses necessary to sustain the business during and after the public health emergency.” The grants may also be used for public health measures necessary to prepare for safe reopening, including, for example, plastic barriers and floor markings or public outreach and education materials, the county says.

You can learn more about the relief fund here. A full list of grants is below.

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