JACKSON—The Consumers Energy Foundation is bringing back the Put Your Town on the Map pitch competition to provide $50,000 for big ideas in Michigan’s small towns.
The Put Your Town on the Map competition provides dollars for three projects that aim to help small communities in Michigan grow and thrive. Communities with a population of up to 10,000 have through March 18 to submit proposals.
“It’s no secret the past two years have been challenging for everyone. As we look toward a more hopeful future, Consumers Energy is proud to continue our tradition of helping the communities we serve grow and thrive,” said Roger Curtis, Consumers Energy vice president of public affairs. “Michigan’s small and rural towns have big ideas for their futures, and we’re excited to help provide the resources necessary to bring those projects to life.”
The Consumers Energy Foundation and the Community Economic Development Association of Michigan (CEDAM) will select 10 finalists to make their pitch at the Small Town and Rural Development Conference in May. The top three winners will receive grants worth $25,000, $15,000 and $10,000, respectively.
Consumers Energy started the competition in 2019. In 2021, grant dollars were awarded to Comins Township in Oscoda County to support a public square for events and tourism promotion, Pinckney in Livingston County to build an accessible community garden, and Alma in Gratiot County to create an art corridor in the downtown area.
“Every small and rural community in Michigan needs to enter the Consumers Energy Foundation’s Put Your Town on the Map contest,” said Rob Murphy, Comins Township supervisor. “Comins Township was honored to be recognized in 2021 as one of the three winners who received grant dollars from this competition. This opportunity has begun a community wide transformation and it’s all centered around our new Fairview Town Square and events area being constructed.”
The Put Your Town on the Map competition aims to reward innovative ideas that attract visitors to downtowns, focus on housing, education or employment, create community pride and more. Community leaders can learn more and apply at http://cedamichigan.org/rpm/conference-rpm.
The Consumers Energy Foundation is the charitable arm of Consumers Energy, Michigan’s largest energy provider. In 2021, the Consumers Energy Foundation, Consumers Energy, its employees and retirees contributed over $17.5 million to Michigan nonprofits. For more information, visit www.ConsumersEnergy.com/foundation.