$25,000 goal to win matching grant through MEDC’s Public Spaces Community Places initiative
LANSING, Mich. – The Village of Middleville will complete its amphitheater with accessibility and an art sculpture walk, through the anticipated success of a crowdfunding campaign, the Michigan Economic Development Corporation (MEDC), Thornapple Arts Council, and Middleville DDA announced today. The campaign is being offered through the Michigan-based crowdfunding platform Patronicity and represents the second public art project that the Thornapple Arts Council and Middleville DDA have partnered on.
If the campaign reaches its crowdfunding goal of $25,000 by August 29, the project will win a matching grant with funds made possible by MEDC’s Public Spaces Community Places program. For project details and to donate, please visit: patronicity.com/artwalk.
“This project will add enhanced safety and accessibility to Middleville’s only outdoor performing arts venue while also providing an interactive art walk for all to enjoy,” said MEDC Executive Vice President of Economic Development Incentives Michele Wildman. “We are pleased to support and provide resources for this project through our Public Spaces Community Places program.”
This project will build out three flat, level tiers around the amphitheater and place a collection of sculptures in the surrounding park to create an art walk around the Amphitheater. This campaign will fully activate this downtown gathering space by adding amenities like the tiers, which will enhance safety and accessibility of this outdoor, hillside venue for all people to enjoy. The tiers will also be wide enough to host events like makers markets and more. Art along the trail will invite and encourage a wide variety of users to seek healthy recreation and creative inspiration.
“We are so excited about the opportunity to participate in the MEDC’s Public Spaces Community Places crowd-matching program and partner with the Thornapple Arts Council on this project. For the Village of Middleville and the surrounding rural community, the downtown amphitheater area functions as our only outdoor performing arts space and is a popular gathering place,” said Katherine Bussard, Village of Middleville DDA Director. “This opportunity to match local investment with state investment really gives us a dynamic tool to make this place even more vibrant, inspiring, and inviting with meaningful art and improvements to the natural terrain and seating.”
Public Spaces Community Places is a collaborative effort of the MEDC, the Michigan Municipal League, and Patronicity, in which local residents can use crowdfunding to be part of the development of strategic projects in their communities and be backed with a matching grant from MEDC. Communities, nonprofits and other business entities can apply at https://patronicity.com/puremichigan.
“The Michigan Municipal League is a strong proponent of community wealth building,” said Dan Gilmartin, CEO and Executive Director of the League. “This amphitheater and art walk speaks directly to the arts and culture component of community building. This project will improve the human experience for all for generations to come, which is what community wealth building is all about.”
The Public Spaces Community Places initiative started in 2014 with MEDC providing matched funding of up to $50,000 for community improvement projects throughout Michigan. As of May 31, 2022, MEDC has provided more than $10.1 million in matching grants. Since the launch of the program, 316 projects have been successful in reaching their goal, with $11.8 million raised from 54,355 individual donors. Communities have a 97 percent success rate in achieving their goals and earning our matching funds.
About Michigan Economic Development Corporation (MEDC)
The Michigan Economic Development Corporation is the state’s marketing arm and lead advocate for business development, job awareness and community development with the focus on growing Michigan’s economy. For more information on the MEDC and our initiatives, visit www.MichiganBusiness.org. For Pure Michigan® tourism information, your trip begins at www.michigan.org. Join the conversation on: Facebook, Instagram, LinkedIn, and Twitter.
About Thornapple Arts Council (TAC)
The Thornapple Arts Council of Barry County was founded in November 1985 by Sue Drummond with help from John Fehsenfeld and many generous supporters behind the scenes. 36 years later, Thornapple Arts Council members, volunteers, and staff maintain their vision to spark creativity, community, and culture through programs and education that bring personal enrichment and quality of life to Barry County residents.
Learn more at www.thornapplearts.org.
About the Village of Middleville Downtown Development Authority (DDA)
The Middleville Downtown Development Authority, in collaboration with local, public, and private entities, strives to take meaningful action to ensure maximum economic growth and development, historic preservation & revitalization, and to serve the community through a wide range of resources and grant opportunities. Learn more at www.MiddlevilleDDA.org.