Lyman Allyn Art Museum Receives State Grant to Revitalize Grounds for Urban Park

The Lyman Allyn Art Museum was recently awarded a state grant of nearly $500,000 as part of the $7 million in funds released under the State’s Good to Great Grant Program. Co-administered by the Connecticut Department of Economic and Community Development (DECD) and CT Humanities, the grant program supports 34 nonprofit arts, cultural or history organizations specifically through facility and infrastructure upgrades.

“We’re incredibly excited to receive this grant in the amount of $498,796 for our Lyman Allyn Park Project, which will be used to help transform our grounds into a modern urban park for all to enjoy, expanding access to our grounds and the Museum for our community, near and far” Sam Quigley, Museum Director, said, noting that the grant arrived at an important moment in the $6 million multi-year project’s fundraising process.

The Park project represents the ultimate fulfillment of the intentions of the Museum’s founder, Harriet Allyn Upson, who dedicated the Museum to her father, Captain Lyman Allyn, and whose initial plans called for a museum and park. When complete, the project will transform the Museum grounds into a 12-acre urban park that will include an outdoor stage and amphitheater for audiences of up to 250 people, the McCourt 9/11 Memorial Garden, themed sculpture gardens, and a pollinator meadow. In addition, lighted walkways and free wi-fi throughout will enhance the experience of the campus, and relocated parking will allow for the restoration of the Great Lawn in front of the Museum building. Finally, a new pond and scenic cascade will filter water runoff and improve the ecology of Long Island Sound, while illustrating environmental stewardship in action.

“The Good to Great Grant Program is a competitive award program that recognizes those organizations that devote time and energy to planning strategies to improve the visitor experience,” Liz Shapiro, director of Arts, Preservation, and Museums at DECD, said. “These funds have been awarded to organizations of all sizes who demonstrate deep thinking about who they are as organizations, and what they could be if granted access to capital funding.”

To speak with Liza Sharp, the Lyman Allyn Park Campaign Chair and newly appointed Board President, please contact Ellen Anderson, Director of Development, at