TOWNSEND -- The Townsend Cultural Council has set an Oct. 15 postmark deadline for organizations, schools and individuals to apply for grants that support cultural activities in the community.

According to Council spokesperson Susan Shuford, these grants can support a variety of artistic projects and activities in Townsend -- including exhibits, festivals, field trips, short-term artist residencies or performances in schools, workshops and lectures.

The Townsend Cultural Council is part of a network of 329 Local Cultural Councils serving all 351 cities and towns in the Commonwealth. The LCC Program is the largest grassroots cultural funding network in the nation, supporting thousands of community-based projects in the arts, sciences and humanities every year. The state legislature provides an annual appropriation to the Massachusetts Cultural Council, a state agency, which then allocates funds to each community.

This year, the Townsend Cultural Council will distribute about $4250 in grants. Previously funded projects include: Reading Is Magic sponsored by Townsend Public Library, A Musical Journey Through the Years (Townsend Senior Center), Bugworks (Townsend Earth Day Committee), Summer Theater (Townsend Recreation), Now Hear This: the Sound of Science (Hawthorne Brook Middle School) and Pumpernickel Puppets (Spaulding Memorial PTO).

For questions and information on the Townsend Cultural Council, contact Susan Shuford, Chair, at 978-597-1852, culturalcouncil@townsend.ma.us. State and local guidelines, application forms and more information about the Local Cultural Council Program are available online at http://www.mass-culture.org/lcc_public.aspx.