Welcome to the Northern Rio Grande National Heritage Area's Newsletter for July 2016!
Bienvenidos! Be-Po-Wa-Ve! Daahnzo! 
He-Ya-Ho! Welcome!
In the languages of our Tri-County National Heritage Area - Welcome!

The first edition of Contento brings you some of the latest news, events and happenings from our partners in the Northern Rio Grande National Heritage Area. Please encourage your friends, family, and co-workers to sign up to receive the newsletter as well as to experience our area's wealth by visiting our special National Heritage Area.
  A Word (or two) from our Executive Director
One word:   CONTENTO!
Two words:   TEN YEARS!

Hard to believe, but in three months time, October 12, 2016, the Northern Rio Grande National Heritage Area will celebrate its  tenth anniversary .  

We are indeed happy,  contentos , to have reached this milestone. In the last five years we have completed our Management Plan and it has been accepted by the Department of the Interior. We have launched a grants program and handed out over $259,000 in 88 individual grants and another $60,000 in project funding to non-profit organizations. We have funded and premiered a film,  Land Water People Time , to great acclaim, and recently have launched a cultural publication of the same name, again, to great acclaim! The first issue was launched in October, and the second issue was distributed on July 15.

Our greatest achievement has been in establishing successful partnerships with other organizations, helping them to complete important projects and encouraging other people and organizations to take note that we do exist. 

Through one partnership with Santa Fe County we have expanded our website to enable us to feature and promote individual working artists, and we are expanding this outreach to artists in other counties.  We look forward to working with Taos County to provide funding for renovation of the Old Taos County Courthouse on Taos Plaza, and to working with the Ohkay Owingeh Housing Authority to fund renovative maintenance of housing in the pueblo plaza. We have already worked with the City of Española to promote development of the Hunter Building Food Hub.  We are now working with Rio Arriba County and will soon move our headquarters to a new location. We will provide information on this in future editions of this newsletter.

I encourage you to read the brief news announcements in this newsletter, and to stay tuned for news and announcements as we plan our Tenth Anniversary celebration. 
Tomás Romero
2016 Grant Cycle
Would you believe that since 2009 the Northern Rio Grande National Heritage Area has given out over $259,000 in grants to over 43 local organizations who work to promote the mission of the National Heritage Area? Given that we serve three counties, and our area covers 10,000 square miles, that’s huge!

In the past we have supported projects including an enclosure for historic bean processing machinery for the Historic Pinto Bean Museum, EVFAC’s An Unbroken Thread : Wool & Weaving in Northern New Mexico video, a tile mural for the Embudo Valley Library and Community Center, Mesa Prieta Petroglyph Project’s school curriculum, and repairs for Acequia Sancochada. These diverse organizations come together under our granting umbrella to make the Northern Rio Grande Heritage Area a vibrant, and exciting place to live, work, create, and visit.

This year’s granting cycle – which was juried in June – will support 22 diverse organizations across the tri-county region. Our criteria for supporting a project are the size and scope, together with the level of generated community involvement, as well as being aligned with our mission. This year we expanded our levels of funding to allow for requests between $1,000 and $5,000. In total, we awarded $64,366 in grants. For a complete list of grantees please see our website.

Within a few hours of launching our new Facebook page we had over 100 friends. Please 'like' us and become a supporter of the Northern Rio Grande Heritage Area
National Heritage Areas
We’re part of a vast national network of National Heritage Areas working to expand on traditional conservation approaches by supporting large-scale, community-driven initiatives that engage communities in heritage preservation activities. National Heritage Area entities, such as ours, collaborate with stakeholders to determine how to make heritage relevant to local needs and interests. These entities serve as catalysts for community and economic development. Now the National Park Service has published a ‘By the Numbers’ report that gives statistics on the work NHAs do, and what the benefits are to the general public.
There are 49 NHAs spread out across the United States, as diverse as Michigan’s MotorCities National Heritage Area, West Virginia’s National Coal Heritage Area, and Ohio’s National Aviation Heritage Area. Surprisingly, given our culturally and geographically rich state, we are the only NHA in New Mexico!
Meet the Artists
You may have noticed that a new tab has recently appeared on the index of our website. Meet the Artists is our new database initiative that invites artists from the Northern Rio Grande National Heritage Area to sign up and post their profile and a photograph of their work on the site. With so many talented and skilled artists and artisans calling the tri-county area home, we wanted to find a way to bring them together in an accessible format that curators, residents and visitors can easily access.

Imagine that you wanted to take a road trip from Eldorado to Chama, and you thought it might be fun to visit all the glassblowers’ studios on way. Meet the Artists makes it easy to plot a route to take in as many – or as few – of the listed studios as you desire. The database gives you contact information, opening hours, locations of studios, descriptions of the work, and samples of the artists’ style, so you can decide how to design your experience.

Meet the Artists is a free service for artists of all mediums, and another way to market your work to a larger community. From writers to actors, painters to weavers, all artists are invited to help build a creative network that reaches all corners of our Heritage Area.

We are lucky to have a partner in this endeavor. Santa Fe County recently formed an Arts, Culture and Cultural Tourism Committee (ACCT) to find out what Santa Fe area artists could really use to be supported and encouraged. As we developed the Meet the Artists database, ACCT designed a short survey to collect information that will help them market and promote the area’s artists. As artists sign up for Meet the Artists, they are encouraged to fill out the survey.

If you are an artist and haven’t signed up, please visit the portal. If you know an artist, please encourage them to check out Meet the Artists.
Land, Water, People, Time
Informative, glossy and downright beautiful! That’s one description of our latest initiative to spread the word about the Northern  Rio Grande National Heritage Are a to visitors, residents and businesses.
Through a collaboration with Rio Arriba County, the Taos News, and the Santa Fe New Mexican, we launched Land Water People Time in the winter of 2015. Packed with in-depth profiles on the area’s movers and shakers, as well as informative articles on little-known and little-visited cultural places, the publication is both wonderful to read and glorious to look at. All of us here at NRGNHA are proud of this achievement. And the good news is that our second issue, focusing on the northern corridor, has just been published! This issue issue shines a spotlight on the secret gems that come together to make New Mexico - and Northern New Mexico in particular - one of the world’s most intriguing places to live. Find the first issue on our website and pick up the new copy now!.  
Projects and Partnerships:
EVFAC's Fiber Rocks!
Last year we gave a grant to the Espanola Valley Fiber Arts Center to support their project ‘Fiber Rocks!’. In a partnership with the Mesa Prieta Petroglyph Project, Fiber artists from New Mexico and surrounding states toured the Wells Petroglyph Preserve, home to some of the most fascinating petroglyphs in Northern New Mexico. They sketched and photographed the petroglyphs and returned to their studios to reinterpret and incorporate them in their own work. What resulted was an amazing group show of fiber art in all its forms. The Fiber Rocks! exhibition kicked off at el Convento in Española, travelled to El Museo de Cultural in Santa Fe, and finally ended up at the Martinez Hacienda in Taos. As is the case with a lot of the partnership grants we give out, Fiber Rocks! was a very successful project, fulfilling our mission to support artisans, heritage culture, and nurturing partnerships between entities in Rio Arriba, Santa Fe, and Taos Counties.

Despite snowy conditions, the opening receptions in all three locations were very well attended, and many more people visited throughout the four months. If you weren’t able to attend, you can now get a taste of the exhibition through EVFAC's online catalogue     

Public Art at Glorieta Battlefield
At its last meeting, our Board approved a new collaboration with the National Park Service – Pecos National Historical Park - and Santa Fe County as fiscal agent, for a recent appropriation made by the State of New Mexico to create a new monument between Glorieta and Pecos to honor the New Mexican contingent in the Civil War Battle at Glorieta. The Civil War took its toll on soldiers from Northern New Mexico in battles pitched in March 1862. The battle was a turning point in stemming the progression of the Confederacy over New Mexico. Commemorative monuments to the soldiers from Colorado and Texas already exist, but credit for the valiant efforts of Northern New Mexicans has not been given. We are pleased to participate in this effort. The project will be our Centennial collaboration with the National Park Service. Read an account of the battle in the new issue of Land Water People Time, p. 68.

The Mission of the Northern Rio Grande National Heritage Area is to sustain the communities, heritages, languages, cultures, traditions, and environment of Northern New Mexico through partnerships, education and interpretation.

Our Vision is Community and economic viability rooted in the heritage and the environment of Northern New Mexico.