Jackson Mine Park Pavilion Opens : Grant Spotlight
This past month the City of Negaunee held a ribbon cutting ceremony celebrating the completion of the pavilion building in Jackson Mine Park. The project has been in the works since 2012, with a total cost of $485,000. Funds and grants have been raised over the past seven years (2012-2019), including a grant from the Negaunee Area Community Fund. The project “broke ground” in 2019, after the City was awarded a grant through the DNR, fulfilling the resources needed for the project.
The finished building consists of a large, covered picnic area and restrooms, with plans of adding on a kitchen area. The project also included an on-site parking lot. The pavilion, which is located off the Iron Ore Heritage trail, on Tobin Street in Downtown Negaunee, is open to the public and available to reserve for private events through the City of Negaunee.
Projects like this show the opportunities that become feasible when our grantmaking abilities are utilized to their fullest potential. When we work together, we can achieve greater goals. By helping organizations leverage funding, we engage as partners in larger projects which then have a greater impact in our community.
The Community Foundation of Marquette County, including four affiliate funds – Negaunee, Greater Ishpeming, Marquette, and Gwinn Area – recently granted over $100,000 as part of the annual competitive grant cycle.
Of the total grant funding, over $25,000 was awarded to programs related to human services. Over $21,000 was awarded to environment and recreation. Over $17,000 was awarded to arts, culture, and music. Over $15,000 was awarded to youth and education. Over $14,000 was awarded to health. Over $5,000 was awarded to community improvement. This grant cycle included funds from the COVID-19 Community Response Fund to support nonprofits that continue to navigate organizational and operational needs from ongoing pandemic response.
2021 grantees included Willow Farm Therapeutic Riding program, which received funds to replace expired helmets for youth involved in the program. The grant was made possible by the Stephen Blondeau Memorial Fund, which was established at the Community Foundation in 1996 to support projects related to youth safety in the Upper Peninsula.
Willow Farm Therapeutic Riding volunteer Luanne Peterson said, “As an affiliate program of the Professional Association of Therapeutic Horsemanship (PATH) International, horseback riding helmets are a safety requirement that we continue to adhere to. PATH International requires all participants to wear protective headgear that is American Society for Testing and Materials – Safety Equipment Institute (ASTM-SEI) certified. Depending on the amount of use, riding helmets hold the ASTM-SEI certification for 3 – 5 years after they are purchased. This grant will allow the program to provide required safety gear for youth and continue to follow PATH International’s protocols for safety.”
Volunteers from each of the Community Foundation’s affiliate fund form committees to review applications and recommend grants to the Community Foundation’s Board of Trustees. Grant distribution events were recently held for the Ishpeming, Negaunee and Marquette affiliates to celebrate the grantees making an impact on residents of Marquette County. A final grant distribution event will be held on July 4 in Gwinn at The Up North Lodge. This event is part of the popular Bike Night event series and is a fundraiser for the Gwinn Area Community Fund.
The COVID-19 Community Response Fund, a collaboration of the Community Foundation of Marquette County and United Way of Marquette County, recently granted over $35,000 to twenty-three Marquette County nonprofits. These grants were given as “phase two” of the fund, supporting operational expenses for local nonprofits.
The COVID-19 Community Response Fund volunteer committee met weekly and biweekly since March 2020 to establish the fund, review applications, and quickly disperse grants as part of phase one. The fund distributed over $88,000 in grants in phase one, supporting basic needs such as food for children and seniors and protective equipment for front-line workers and volunteers, among many other requests.
The committee met in January to review phase two applications, providing operational support for nonprofits. These organizations have been affected by decreases in funding typically provided by fundraising events and admission or program fees. The committee awarded $35,620 in phase two grants to help offset these losses – the complete list of phase two awardees is below.
In the last ten months, the COVID-19 Community Response Fund has awarded over $124,000 in phase one and phase two grants to Marquette County nonprofits and charitable causes.
COVID-19 Community Response Fund Phase Two Grant Recipients
906 Community Church
Bay Cliff Health Camp
Big Brothers Big Sisters of Marquette and Alger Counties, Inc.
Cancer Care of Marquette County
Forsyth Township Police
Hope Free Lutheran Church
Ishpeming Historical Society
Little Brothers, Friends of the Elderly
Marquette Alger Resolution Services
Marquette Regional History Center
Moosewood Nature Center
Negaunee Senior Center
NICE Community Schools
Room at the Inn
St. Anthony’s Catholic Parish
Superior Children’s Advocacy
Superior Housing Solutions
The Salvation Army – Marquette and Ishpeming
UP Children’s Museum