Ragdale is a non-profit artists’ community located on architect Howard Van Doren Shaw’s country estate in Lake Forest, IL, 30 miles north of Chicago. In 1976, Shaw’s granddaughter, Alice Judson Hayes, transformed her family’s summer home into an artist's retreat to provide time and space for artists to create important new work.

Today, Ragdale annually hosts nearly 200 visual artists, writers, composers, and interdisciplinary artists at all stages of their careers for 18-25 day residencies, making it one of the largest interdisciplinary artist communities in the country. Ragdale offers a retreat setting where at any given time, a dozen creative individuals experience uninterrupted time for dedicated work, a supportive environment, family-style dinners, and dynamic artist exchanges within a backdrop of 50 acres of idyllic prairie.

Third Coast International Audio Festival and Ragdale welcome producers of all experience levels to apply for our 4th annual Third Coast Radio Residency, May 13-19, 2019.

“I want to make really extraordinary, groundbreaking art. I want to work really hard to be in a position of power so that I can put other queer people of color in positions of power as well. I want to be able to share stories about people who aren’t straight and white. I think that there’s a new generation that’s coming up… and I think the Third Coast Radio Residency is really connecting people who are going to be able to lead that charge and people who should be having space made for them in the industry.” 

- Phoebe Wang, 2018 Third Coast Radio Resident


Third Coast seeks a vibrant group of producers of varied experience levels who come from backgrounds underrepresented in public media and podcasting to spend a rare week away from the demands and deadlines of everyday life to make progress on an audio story or documentary project that they're especially excited to pursue. 

During the week of May 13-19, 2019, a group of 8-10 producers will have the woodsy Ragdale retreat to themselves, to work, commune, and share expertise. Ragdale, one of the largest interdisciplinary artists’ communities in the country, is located in Lake Forest, 30 miles north of Chicago. Each artist will be given a private room and workspace, and all meals will be provided, including a family-style dinner each evening.

Nishat Kurwa (Executive Producer for Audio at Vox Media) will be on staff to offer all residents one-on-one editing and guidance sessions during the residency. Sarah Geis (Independent Producer, audio educator, and former Third Coast Artistic Director) will also be on staff to offer office hours and optional group workshops.  

At the time of the residency, participants should be mid-project, allowing them to focus on the writing, editing and production of their final works.

The 2019 Third Coast Radio Residency is made possible with support from the Third Coast Fund and the Ragdale Foundation:

- The Third Coast Fund covers the costs of the Radio Residency programming as well as travel (flights and ground). 

- Ragdale generously subsidizes the costs of room and board (all meals during the residency) so that participants pay only $35/night. The total cost to each participant will be $210, for six nights.


The Radio Residency is open to all who identify as part of an under-represented group in public radio and podcasting. Areas of under-representation may include - but are not limited to – race, ethnicity, economic background, sexual orientation, disability, and geographic location (producers working outside of public media strongholds). 

We highly encourage applicants to apply if they have a work in progress that they're passionate about and need time and support to make significant strides on.

Producers of all experience levels are encouraged to apply, though you must have, at minimum, basic production and editing skills. Residents must be 21 or older, be living in the United States, and have their own laptops and other equipment necessary to complete their projects.


Applicants should submit project proposals through ragdale.org via its online portal no later than 11:59pm on Thursday, January 31, 2019. Producers will be notified if they’ve been selected by March 1.

 A completed application consists of:

1. A written explanation of up to 500 words that clearly describes the story/project you plan to work on at the Third Coast Radio Residency, and include the following: where it might be presented (via radio, podcast, Internet, live event), and for what intended audience; the progress you’ve made so far and the work that lies ahead; how you plan to spend your time at Ragdale; and how the Residency would help you make strides on your story/project. 

Please keep in mind that the Third Coast Radio Residency is intended to help producers bring strong, sound-rich new stories into the world.

2. Resume

3. Bio - Describe your experience that supports your ability to complete this project, and how you identify as part of an under-represented group in public radio and/or podcasting. (100 words max)

4. Work Samples – Include links to 2-3 work samples. They do not all need to be audio examples, but at least one should be.

5. Recommendation Survey - to be completed by a professional reference who can speak to your strengths and ability to benefit from the Residency.

December 1, 2018 – Application opens
January 31, 2019  – Application deadline
February 7, 2019 – Recommendation Survey deadline
March 1 - Notification
May 13-19, 2019 – Radio Residency at Ragdale

Please send your email questions to info@thirdcoastfestival.org, or give us a ring at 312-948-4682.


The Ragdale Foundation provides more than 150 residencies and fellowships annually to creative professionals of all types, making the historic retreat one of the largest interdisciplinary artists’ communities in the country. Each session, up to 13 artists-in-residence experience uninterrupted time for dedicated work on a 5-acre historic campus beside a beautiful 50-acre prairie, 30 miles north of Chicago. With live/work studios, all meals provided, and unmatched staff support, Ragdale lets artists focus on what’s most important: creating new work.

Third Coast International Audio Festival (TCIAF) curates sound-rich audio stories from around the world and shares them with as many ears as possible – via radio and podcast, on the internet, and at public listening events all over the place. Operating year-round in Chicago, Third Coast also supports producers through its annual Conference, Competition and Radio Residency.

Ends on March 8, 2019$25.00


Applicants should submit project proposals through ragdale.org via the Submittable online portal no later than 11:59 pm on Friday, March 8, 2018. Proposal review and notification will take place by March 22. 


Applicants are encouraged to visit Ragdale prior to submitting their application. Projects may be sited in your choice of varied locations including a gently sloping lawn area of approximately 80’ x 80’ located immediately behind the 1897 Arts and Crafts Ragdale House bordered by a garden, woods, and 50 acres of native prairie. A flat lawn area of similar size is located between the Ragdale House and Barn House. Photos of the Ragdale campus are available at ragdale.org. The installation and its location are subject to approval by Ragdale staff as well as the City of Lake Forest. The winning team must provide its own insurance while constructing the project at Ragdale. The project must meet safety requirements to be able to withstand the effects of outdoor conditions and public use. 

Proposals are open to any interpretation of the original Ragdale Ring but should adhere to the following guidelines: 

1 The structure, in its entirety or parts, should accommodate up to 150 temporary seats (such as our guests’ picnic blankets and lawn chairs) as well as a stage with a minimum size of 20’ x 20’. 

2 A light rain/sun shelter within the stage area should be incorporated to protect performers and equipment. 

3 The proposal should address plans for the reuse, recycling, and dispersal of all material used in the project. 

4 A preliminary budget should be included that identifies expenses related to the $15,000 production grant. If the budget exceeds this grant, the proposal should include potential additional funding sources and in-kind donations. 

5 Renderings and sketches should be included as part of the proposal. 

6 Present evidence of your team’s qualifications in sufficient detail to demonstrate your capacity to complete the project as you have described it. 

7 The project must meet safety requirements to be able to withsatnd the effects of outdoor conditions and public use.

8 The installation and its location are subject to approval by Ragdale staff as well as the City of Lake Forest.

A completed application consists of: 

1 Written Proposal – An explanation of up to 1,000 words that clearly describes the project and its relationship to the historic Ring as well as its anticipated use. 

2 Visual Proposal – A selection of 5-8 digital images and/or a maximum 5-minute video that show plans, renderings, and drawings of your proposed structure. Optionally, a 3-5 minute video can be included.

3 Previous Work Samples – A selection of 5 digital images that represent your portfolio of work. Each file submitted should have a title, date, and brief description of work. 

4 Resume/CV – A current resume/CV for each team member should include information about education, work, and teaching experience, exhibition history (if applicable), awards, grants, residencies, and other relevant information, including links to websites, blogs, etc. 

Submittable accepts documents (.pdf), images (.jpg, .jpeg, .png, .gif, .tif, .tiff, .bmp, .tga), audio (.mp3, .wma, .ogg, .flac), and video (.m4v, .mov, .mp4, .wmv, .flv, .asf, .mpeg, .mpg, .mkv).


One project will be chosen. The recipient will receive a $15,000 production grant towards realizing the proposed project. The winning team will also receive a design-build residency for up to three weeks, which includes a studio plus full room and board for up to ten people during the month of May and June 2018. The project must be completed by June 14, as it will be featured in a spring event. 


Architects, artists, and designers are invited to apply. Applicants do not need to be registered architects. Those outside of the Chicago area are eligible to apply, but additional funds for transportation will not be available. Production grant funds may be used for transportation as long as overall quality of the project is not sacrificed.

This application form is for the Ragdale Ring Design/Build Residency competition only. Please apply under the "Ragdale Residency Program 2019" for other residencies. Notification for the Ragdale Ring takes place March 22. This residency takes place May 27-June 14, 2019.