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Grassroots DesignFest 2023

Mark your calendars for Grassroots DesignFest 2023!

Maryland Institute College of Art (MICA) and T. Rowe Price Foundation will host the sixth annual Grassroots DesignFest in February and March 2023.

Applications for local Baltimore nonprofits to participate will open on Monday, October 3, and are due by midnight on Monday, November 7. Mark your calendars and learn more about the event below!

What Is Grassroots DesignFest?

Grassroots DesignFest is an annual event to help small Baltimore nonprofits better communicate their identity, mission, and impact through stronger visual design – at no cost to your organization!

DesignFest started as a 10-hour design-a-thon in 2018. The event brought volunteer teams of MICA students and local professionals to collaborate with 15 nonprofits to prototype logo designs, website updates, branding ideas, and other creative strategies to help these organizations meet their most pressing design needs.

In 2021 and 2022, DesignFest became an all-virtual and multi-day event due to COVID-19. This event format gave nonprofits with more complex projects the opportunity to work with a wider geographic range of students, alumni, and professionals over two weeks. Read more about last year’s event here!

Grassroots DesignFest 2023 will combine the best of both event formats, taking place in person and virtually. Its goal remains the same – to use volunteer creativity and talent to help your organization share its story so you can have a greater impact on your community.

Interested in learning more?

To check out examples of the creative design solutions from prior years of DesignFest, review last year’s application questions, and view a pre-recorded information session video to see if the event is right for you, visit

2023 Event Dates

In 2023, DesignFest will return to its original one-day, in-person format at MICA on Saturday, March 25 from 9:00 AM to 4:30 PM for nonprofits that want to receive design suggestions to improve their current logos, branding, or marketing materials. Nonprofits will meet their design teams for a virtual project kickoff on Wednesday, March 22 from 6:30 to 7:00 PM.

For nonprofits that want input on their website design, social media strategy, or other projects that may require additional time, DesignFest will take place over four virtual meetings:

  • Wednesday, February 22 from 6:30 to 7:00 PM: Virtual project kickoff and introductions
  • Saturday, February 25 from 9:00 to 10:30 AM: Provide input for working session #1
  • A check-in sometime during the week between February 27 to March 3
  • Saturday, March 4 from 11:00 AM to 12:30 PM: presentations and celebration

Please spread the word about this event by sharing with your networks or encourage nonprofits to join the T. Rowe Price Foundation’s Capacity Building Program email list for nonprofits to continue receiving emails about this and other events. See you when applications open!


Become a Member

As a member of GBCA, you will not only gain access to wonderful benefits, but you will also become an active participant in a broader cultural community. Your organization and employees will directly benefit from opportunities to collaborate, connect, learn, network and share with your colleagues in the cultural community. Join our growing constituency of over 300 individual artists and organizations representing the region's extraordinary range of arts, culture, history, heritage, humanities, and attractions.

Join Today