Back to News

Electric Forest invests $27,000 into Community, Arts, Music, and Preservation Projects in Oceana County

The Electric Forest Music Festival has been an Oceana County summer staple since 2008, bringing people across the country together to celebrate art, music, and nature. While the Festival’s grandeur is known cross-country, few know about its philanthropic footprint in West Michigan. This summer, the Festival’s Electric Forest Charitable Fund celebrates the sixth anniversary of its Music in Schools Programs with a $10,000 grant. Its generosity continues with additional grants totaling $17,000 to the Oceana Conservation District, the Hart Project “putting the art in Hart”, and the Oceana Community Foundation.

Electric Forest began collaborating with the Oceana Community Foundation in 2019, creating the Electric Forest Charitable Fund to support music programs in public schools. The Festival expanded the Music in Schools Program to better support ALL that The Forest values – Community, Arts, Music, and Preservation or EF Michigan CAMP Project.

The Electric Forest Charitable Fund’s $10,000 grant to Music in Schools marks its continued investment in making music accessible for area students. The Festival’s program inspired matching grants from nine other Oceana Community Foundation funders to triple the collective support to $29,500 for local musicians! This program will provide instruments, equipment & supplies for under-resourced music and choir programs in Hart, Hesperia, Montague, Shelby, Pentwater and Walkerville schools. New this year is the addition of Walkerville Public Schools as they begin to re-launch their tabled music program across K-12 grades, including the band program.

The Festival’s $7,000 support to the Oceana Conservation District (OCD) will help facilitate a master plan for developing and preserving the Stony Creek Nature Preserve. The Morse family donated the Nature Preserve in 2022 to OCD, providing Oceana County with a beautiful slice of the Stony Creek shoreline. Through the generous support of donors like the Electric Forest Charitable Fund, the 40-acre Nature Preserve will open soon with newly created trails and infrastructure for local nature enthusiasts and out-of-town visitors. A crucial part of the Stony Lake Nature Preserve will be its ADA-accessible parking and trails for visitors with different abilities, which is a special interest area for Electric Forest. OCD anticipates the Nature Preserve becoming a popular destination for fishing enthusiasts, school field trips, hikers, and outdoorsmen throughout the seasons.

The Hart Project strives to transform Hart into an artistic enclave in West Michigan, establishing its 25 by 2025 mission to build 25 art installations across the city in the next two years. The Festival is a continued supporter of this initiative and recently granted $5,000 to the City of Hart to purchase a new sculpture. The installation will be a large bridge troll made from natural materials like mud and tree branches, nestled near the fishing bridge by Hart Lake. In 2023, the Electric Forest Charitable Fund contributed to the Hart Project’s installation of the 24-foot Tin Man in downtown area through a $5,000 grant.

Electric Forest Charitable Fund’s final summer grant of $5,000 supports the Oceana Community Foundation’s operational growth. “As a smaller, but growing rapidly, community foundation, we are proud to build an organization that continues to build community capital and create lasting resources for generations to come,” Foundation CEO Tammy Carey shared. “Electric Forest’s investment in our growth is essential to expanding our impact. Operations are often overlooked despite being an essential part of our work. It funds our staff, office, and administration so that we can continue to help Oceana families, businesses, and organizations achieve their charitable goals.” By supporting CFOC’s administration, the Electric Forest Charitable Fund is supporting the community’s philanthropic goals.

The Oceana Community Foundation was established in 1989 by community leaders who envisioned a bright future for Oceana County. The Foundation serves as a bridge to connect philanthropy with community needs or opportunities and envisions an Oceana where everyone has access to resources to thrive. You can support the Electric Forest Charitable Fund, one of the Foundation’s 200+ Funds, or learn more about starting your own named fund here or reach out to CEO Tammy Carey at 231-869-3377.