Iowa Great Places seeks to cultivate the local character and authentic qualities of Iowa neighborhoods, districts, communities and regions. At its core, the program embraces ‘creative placemaking’, or the approach of building upon local creative and cultural assets to build more livable communities and vibrant public places.
The program provides a ten-year designation as an Iowa Great Place, professional development and technical assistance resources, and competitive funding opportunities for new and existing infrastructure projects included in a vision plan and supported by a mix of partners and strategies.
For guidance on community visioning or to find resources from other state agencies, view the corresponding resources.
- Who: Nonprofits, Communities
- What: Designation, professional development and funding eligibility
- When: 2022 Designation and Re-designation cycle opens January 5, 2022
- Application deadline for Re-Designation: February 24, 2022
- Application deadline for New Designation: May 2, 2022
- Funding cycle for eligible Iowa Great Places opens August 8, 2022.
How to Apply
- Read the FY23 Iowa Great Places Designation Guidelines
- Watch the Iowa Great Places Informational Webinar
- Submit the application
Manage Your Designation
Download the handbook to learn how to manage your designation, including Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) compliance and publicity. View the Creative Places and State Department Resources web pages for additional guidance.
Iowa Great Places Promotion
Please use the most recent versions of Iowa Great Places and Iowa Department of Cultural Affairs logos on materials promoting your Iowa Great Place. Find information on how to acknowledge the department's support in the handbook.
- Iowa Department of Cultural Affairs and Iowa Great Places Logos
- Send images and event details about your Iowa Great Place for promotion in Iowa Department of Cultural Affairs communication outlets
As a designee, you must complete the annual report form at the end of each calendar year and share the impact of the designation on arts and culture in Iowa.
Iowa Great Places and Projects
2021 Endorsed Iowa Great Places Projects
The Iowa Great Places Citizen Advisory Board annually reviews and endorses projects taking place as part of an Iowa Great Place community’s vision. Endorsed projects may also receive additional state agency consideration. Interested applicants to other State of Iowa programs should review this list to see if their project qualifies for Iowa Great Places scoring increases.