Petaluma Buzz

Opprtunities abound for financially hurting arts nonprofits, poets looking for prizes, and artists optimistically hoping to open their studios for this year’s Art Trails.|

Art Trails going digital for 2021, seeking applicant artists now: Sonoma County’s celebrated annual self-guided art tour is currently expected to return this fall. The event, in which art fans can visit the studios of working artists, is the oldest juried open studio tour in the country. Scheduled for the weekends of Sept. 18 and 19, and 25 and 26, from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m., the tour is open to artists who have a studio within Sonoma County, and who are accepted through submission of an online application, which will be reviewed by a panel of jurors. Applications are due by April 1. For information and to download an application, visit

COVID-19 CARGO grants available to arts organizations hard hit by the pandemic: The Community Foundation Sonoma County and Creative Sonoma have jointly established a new program titled CARGO, meaning COVID-19 Arts Relief Grants for Organizations. Recognizing that many Sonoma County arts nonprofits have sustained devastating losses due to cancelations of programs, the CARGO grants have been established to assist such groups as they move into a still uncertain future. Phase one and two of the program have concluded, but phase three, focusing solely on Sonoma County-based nonprofit arts organizations in need, officially opened on March 2, with a deadline of March 30. Awardees will be notified on May 4. An application workshop will be held on Zoom on March 16, from noon to 1:30 p.m. To register or find additional information visit

Annual Redwood Writers poetry contest now open for submissions: Physicist Dennis Gabor, the Nobel prize-winning inventor of the holograph, once said, “Poetry is plucking at the heartstrings, and making music with them.” All local pluckers of said strings should know that submissions of original heart music (by which we mean poems) are now being accepted as The Redwood Writers kick off its 2021 Poetry Contest. The annual contest is open to members of The Redwood Writers, an organization of professional and non-professional writers of all kinds, though the competition will also accept submissions from non-members residing in Sonoma, Napa, Marin, Mendocino, Lake, Humboldt and Solano Counties, with a $100 prize going to the first place winner, and $50 and $25 going to the second and third place winners, respectively. Judges are Pushcart nominee Les Bernstein, poet and memoirist Susan Gunter, Louise Hofmeister and poet-teacher-director Linda Loveland Reid. There is an entry fee of $10 for members and $15 for non-members. Certain rules apply — up to three poems can be submitted, with a maximum of 50 lines per poem, etc.) — Submissions will be accepted through Thursday, April 15, at 9 p.m. Submissions and additional information/guidelines can be found at

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