Awards & Grants


APA Great Places in America - 2016

Central Park Plaza was designated one of 2016's Great Places in America by the American Planning Association (APA). Central Park Plaza is one of just five (5) public places which received this nationally recognized award in 2016. Previous winners have included Millennium Park in Chicago and Pearl Street Mall in Boulder, Colorado. Click on the image on the left, to learn more about what makes Central Park Plaza one of the greatest places in America.

America's Best Communities Grant - 2016

Valparaiso was a quarter-finalist of the America's Best Communities (ABC) grant. The Valparaiso ABC team chose to pursue an "Arts Corridor" as Valparaiso's Community Project to create social and economic growth. The ABC Team was comprised of  City Leaders committed to designing a community project that would put Valparaiso on top. Those leaders were Bill Oeding, Rex Richards, Tyler Kent, Patrick Lyp, Matt Evans, Lauren Orchard and Mary Jane Thomas.

While Valparaiso only made it to the quarter-finalist round, we continue to pursue the goals and plans created during the competition. From the competition, the Valparaiso Creative District Plan was created and implemented and the Valparaiso Creative Council (VCC) was formed. 

The VCC is tasked with assisting in implementing the 34 supporting actions of the Creative District Plan. The Creative Council aims to create a Creative District where the community could come together to create, explore and celebrate arts, culture and innovation. 

The latest supporting action that was completed by the VCC was 3d: Introduce a Valparaiso Creative Portal. A Creative Portal was developed that allows for the Valparaiso Community to see art-related events in the greater Valparaiso Area. To see more information, visit the creative portal website at


PO Box 2333

Valparaiso, IN 46384

 (219) 462-1161 x3323