Cultural Council of Volusia County to review grant requests next week

The Ormond Memorial Art Museum and the Ormond Beach Historical Society are seeking grant funding. Also in City Watch: VSO honors employees for the first quarter.

The Ormond Memorial Art Museum. File photo by Jarleene Almenas
The Ormond Memorial Art Museum. File photo by Jarleene Almenas
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The Ormond Memorial Art Museum and the Ormond Beach Historical Society are among the 32 nonprofit organizations that are applying for funding from the Cultural Council of Volusia County’s Community Cultural Grant program.

The Cultural Council will review applications for the 2024-2025 discal year from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. on Friday, July 19, in the County Council chambers.

Each organization, according to a press release, will be given a chance to update the nine Cultural Council members about their programs and respond to questions. 

Historically, the program has provided community cultural and heritage organizations with about $611,000 in funding, collectively.

The Ormond Beach Historical Society has received between $13,000 and just over $15,000 for the past six fiscal years. OMAM has received between $25,000 and $27,000.

In June 2023 — following public outcry by local arts organizations over the County Council altering the Cultural Council, and subsequently impacting its grant program — the County Council voted 6-0 to keep the Cultural Council active. (Councilman David Santiago was absent from the meeting). 

Grant scores will be announced at the July 19 meeting, but recommended award amounts will be determined after the County’s budgeting process is completed later this year, the county press release states. 

Funding for the grant program comes from the Volusia County general fund allocation for cultural and heritage programs, and final approval for its distribution will be a County Council’s decision.

The organizations applying for funding this year are:

  • African American Museum of the Arts
  • ArtHaus
  • Artists’ Workshop of New Smyrna Beach
  • Atlantic Center for the Arts
  • Bel Canto Singers of Daytona
  • Cinematique of Daytona
  • Daytona Beach Choral Society
  • Daytona Beach Symphony Society
  • Daytona Playhouse
  • DeLand Naval Air Station
  • Fall Festival of the Arts, DeLand
  • Florida Surf Film Festival
  • Florida Wing, Commemorative Air Force
  • Gateway Center for the Arts
  • Halifax Historical Society
  • Heritage Preservation Trust
  • Hub on Canal
  • IMAGES: A Festival of the Arts
  • Iranian American Society of Daytona Beach
  • Little Theatre of New Smyrna Beach
  • Mary S. Harrell Black Heritage Museum
  • Museum of Art, DeLand
  • Museum of Arts & Sciences
  • Ormond Beach Historical Society
  • Ormond Memorial Art Museum
  • Pioneer Settlement for the Creative Arts
  • Sands Theater Center
  • Shoestring Theatre
  • Southeast Volusia Historical Society
  • USA Dance — Greater Daytona Chapter #6026
  • Volusia Community Arts
  • West Volusia Historical Society

VSO honors employees

Volusia County Sheriff Mike Chitwood and his agency honored employees for their work in the first quarter of the year on Tuesday, July 9.

Among the honorees was Crime Scene Investigator Cole Biter, who was the lead in the unit that executed a search warrant in February for Autumn McClure, an Ormond Beach teen who went missing in 2004. Her remains were found underneath a trailer in the Shady Oaks mobile home park.

Bitner was named the VSO “Employee of the 1st Quarter.”

“Bitner was vital to recovering Autumn, demonstrating exceptional knowledge of equipment and heavy machinery,” VSO wrote on Facebook. “His professionalism ensured proper handling of the crime scene. His tenacity and work ethic make him a great model for his peers.”

Other honorees included:

  • Haley Spooner, Telecommunicator of the 1st Quarter
  • Detective Jayson Richardson, Detective of the 1st Quarter
  • Deputy Zakariah Bacon, Deputy of the 1st Quarter
  • Jim Greene, Volunteer of the 1st Quarter

Summer Sounds concert series to begin Friday

The city of Ormond Beach’s Summer Sounds free concert series will begin on Friday, July 12, with a performance from the Cool Breeze band.

All concerts will take place from 6-8 p.m. at the north lawn of The Casements, located at 25 Riverside Drive.

Bring a lawn chair or a blanket. The concert series is presented by the city’s Department of Leisure Services.

The performance dates are:

  • July 12: Cool Breeze
  • July 19: Blu Highway
  • July 26: Stealing Vanity

Volusia County Fire Rescue now on social media

Want to keep up with Volusia County Fire Rescue?

The agency is now active on Facebook. Follow the page for updates, safety tips and behind-the-scenes looks at the county’s firefighters in action.


School crossing guards needed

The Volusia Sheriff’s Office is looking for school crossing guards for next school year.

According to a post from the VSO Facebook page, the agency is looking for guards in Ormond Beach, Daytona Beach, Holly Hill and South Daytona. The job pays $12 an hour, as posted on the VSO website.

To apply, visit


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