Sault Ste. Marie is improving the pride and use of local asset Malcolm Park with the help of a new crowdfunding campaign, the Michigan Economic Development Corporation, Malcolm Park Pride Committee, and Chippewa County Community Foundation announced this week. The campaign is being offered through Michigan-based crowdfunding platform Patronicity.
If the campaign reaches its crowdfunding goal of $50,000 by December 1, 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/malcolmpark.
“The Malcolm Park Pride project will activate this community asset in an important way. Building accessible and useable spaces for residents and visitors to spend time is critical to good placemaking,” said MEDC Senior Vice President of Community Development Katharine Czarnecki. “We are pleased to provide resources for this effort through our Public Spaces Community Places program.”
The project will make several improvements to the park such as constructing a concession/restroom/changing facility, improving the slowpitch facilities, completing the Gary McClellan Facility and activating the surrounding area. The campaign will provide many necessities to the park including fully accessible restrooms, food and beverage options in a volunteer-run concession area, and locker/changing rooms for local and visiting players.
“On behalf of the city commission, city administration, and the citizens of Sault Ste. Marie, we extend our heartfelt gratitude to the Public Spaces Community Places program and for the Malcolm Park Pride Committee’s efforts and commitment to improving the complex at Malcom Park,” said Sault Ste. Marie Mayor Tony Bosbous. “This will enhance the quality of life in our community for many years to come.”
Plans for the project also include a covered picnic area all connected to the walk/bike path on 12th Avenue and other aesthetic improvements, and making drainage, parking, and sewer upgrades.
“Through this program we can meet our goal to have $125,000 in funds secured so we can break ground on the McClellan Building in the spring. We are off to a good start thanks to momentum from the Field of Dreams Kickball Tournament, and we thank the city for its support,” said Malcolm Park Pride Committee Chairman Kevin Pomeroy. “This has been an impressive team effort from the beginning, and we are ever so grateful to the MEDC for its assistance.”
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.
“Creating inviting public spaces is key to great placemaking,” said Dan Gilmartin, CEO and executive director of the Michigan Municipal League. “Augmenting the facilities at Malcolm Park will certainly make it a more engaging community asset for residents and visitors alike.”
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 September 2018, MEDC has provided $5,403,166 in matching grants. Since the launch of the program, 179 projects have been successful in reaching their goal, with $6.4 million raised from 32,261 individual donors.