Appalshop, Inc.

Funding Received: 2015
Whitesburg/Letcher County, KY
Funding Period: 1 year and 5 months

A federally designated Promise Zone, Letcher County, KY, located in central Appalachia, is experiencing the economic and social effects of reliance on a single industry that is now leaving. The local population is faced with forging its own economic future, one that depends on collaboration, risk, and creativity. Recently, intergenerational entrepreneurs who participated in Appalshop's arts training programs during their youth have helped lead a downtown revitalization effort by opening new businesses that contribute to vibrancy on Main Street. This project will formalize the burgeoning trend of arts programming in the county as a cultural hub to boost the regional economy through increased tourism and creative entrepreneurialism.


See below for recent updates, press, and events from this project

Mar 18, 2019
We're all too familiar with the stories of rural areas that didn't rebound from the last recession, where families are struggling to make ends meet... Read More
Mar 10, 2017
Ben Fink works at Kentucky's Appalshop, a grass-roots multimedia arts center. He writes about how he and his community have been working with each other... Read More
Apr 22, 2016
Letcher County, Ky., is shaped by generations of migration — not always voluntary. There is an almost tidal pull drawing young people out, in search... Read More
Mar 17, 2016
The Obama Administration has announced the availability of $65.8 million in grant funding to help communities hurt by a decline in the coal economy. Read More
Sep 8, 2015
Across the U.S., there's a growing recognition that art and culture can drive community and economic development. But it's rare when those artistic efforts include... Read More
Aug 17, 2015
July was a big month for arts organizations around the state. The Kentucky Arts Council announced $1.2 million in grant funding for operational support to... Read More
Jul 31, 2015
ArtPlace America has awarded grants totaling $730,000 to two Kentucky arts organizations. Letcher County’s Appalshop received $450,000 and Roots & Wings in Jefferson County received $280,000. Read More
Jul 23, 2015
Appalshop, Inc. in Whitesburg, Ky. has announced it is among 38 recipients of the ArtPlace America's 2015 National Grants Program. Read More
“One thing about it is you can never trust the coal company. … They call it Bloody Harlan for a reason. We don’t intend no...Read more
“Environment” might conjure up images of mountains, rivers, and forests. But place-based practitioners know that the “E” word can encompass “built” (human-made physical) and “unbuilt”...Read more
I work at the Appalshop — originally short for “Appalachian Film Workshop.” We were founded in 1969, with funding from the federal War on Poverty...Read more
When a friend visiting from Philadelphia compared Whitesburg, Kentucky, to Stars Hollow, all she got from us was a blank stare. Turns out Stars Hollow...Read more