New Grant Opportunity From Main Street America: Supporting Small Businesses in the Next Phase of Reopening As the economy continues to deal with the effects of COVID-19, we are committed to supporting small businesses as they work to reopen safely. In partnership with The Hartford, we have created a grant program to support brick-and-mortar businesses in commercial districts as they enter the next phases of reopening across the country. The HartBeat of Main Street Grant Program will fund solutions that help small business owners respond and adapt to the COVID-19 pandemic, and also help to revitalize and strengthen older and historic downtown commercial districts. Grants of $5,000 to $15,000 will be awarded on a competitive and first-come, first-served basis. 

A minimum of 50 percent of grants will benefit diverse-owned businesses, as defined by the Small Business Administration as minority, woman, veteran, disabled, and/or LGBTQ-owned. Grant applicants are not required to be customers of The Hartford. Applications will be weighed and grants awarded without consideration of applicant’s being or not being a present, past, or prospective customer of The Hartford. 

 Review program Terms and Conditions here

What types of businesses are eligible? 
Businesses must meet the following criteria to apply: The business must be a business entity in good standing in the state in which it was formed and the state in which it does business. 
The applicant’s business has a “brick-and-mortar” location and operates in an older or historic main street, downtown or commercial district in the U.S. 
The applicant’s business employs 20 or fewer full time employees, including the owner. The applicant’s business has been in operation since January 1, 2019.
 The applicant is an owner of the business and is 18 years of age or older. What types of grant expenses are eligible? 

Eligible grant expenses include but are not limited to: Physical improvements to business space to meet relevant reopening requirements implemented because of COVID-19 Equipment to comply with public health and safety guidelines (i.e., touchless payment methods, automatic door open sensors, or disposable menus) Fees associated with expanding the business to e-commerce sales Other professional services, such as business plan modifications Rent, payroll, and other operating expenses 


Kinsman Foundation  Historic Preservation Grant


OCF Arts and Culture Recovery Grants Open for Application!

The Oregon Community Foundation has opened applications for the Arts & Culture Recovery Grant program.

The Oregon Arts and Culture Recovery Program will provide flexible resources from a cohort of participating funders to support the arts and culture community who have been adversely impacted by the outbreak of COVID-19.

Heritage is part of culture and OCF looks forward to applications from Oregon’s heritage organizations.

If you already submitted an application for an OCF emergency grant earlier on during the COVID-19 crisis, please call and check in with them on how this factors in with your previous application.

Other Grants
  1. Save Small Businesses Fund: By US Chamber of Commerce, $5k grants available for businesses in distressed communities Click Here
  2. CARES Act National Endowment for the Arts (NEA): The Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (CARES) Act recognizes that the nonprofit arts industry is an important sector of America’s economy. The National Endowment for the Arts will award funds to nonprofit arts organizations across the country to help these entities and their employees endure the economic hardships caused by the forced closure of their operations due to the spread of COVID-19. As part of this important investment, the Arts Endowment has designed a plan to expedite the distribution of critical funds to the national, regional, state, and local levels to help retain as many jobs as possible, as quickly as possible. These funds are intended to help save jobs in the arts sector and keep the doors open to the thousands of organizations that add value to America’s economy and the creative life of our communities. Deadline: Submit to Part 1-April 22, 2020, submit application May 4, 2020. Click Here
  3. Farmer Relief Fund – American Farmland Trust: AFT’s Farmer Relief Fund will award farmers with cash grants of up to $1,000 each to help them weather the current storm of market disruptions caused by the coronavirus crisis. Initially, eligible applicants include any small and mid-size direct-market producers. These are defined as producers with annual gross revenue of between $10,000 and $1 million from sales at farmers markets and/or direct sales to restaurants, caterers, schools, stores, or makers who use farm products as inputs. Deadline: Initial application round extending until April 23rd, with grants beginning to be made by May 1st. Click Here
  4. The Main Street Initiative – Mainvest: If you have an existing brick & mortar business that has been negatively affected by the COVID-19 outbreak and you launch a capital raise on Mainvest, you may be eligible to receive a $2,000 zero-interest loan immediately*. Then through your capital raise, you can receive over $100,000 of investment from your community. Click HereHart Family Fund for Small Towns – National Trust for Historic Preservation: Grants from the Hart Family Fund for Small Towns are intended to encourage preservation at the local level by providing seed money for preservation projects in small towns. These grants help stimulate public discussion, enable local groups to gain the technical expertise needed for particular projects, introduce the public to preservation concepts and techniques, and encourage financial participation by the private sector. Grants from the Hart Family Fund for Small Towns generally range from $2,500 to $15,000. Public agencies and nonprofit organizations in towns with a population of 10,000 or less are eligible. Deadline: May 1, 2020. Click Here
  5. Community Challenge – AARP: The AARP Community Challenge grant program is part of the nationwide AARP Livable Communities initiative that helps communities become great places to live for residents of all ages. The AARP Community Challenge provides small grants to fund "quick-action" projects that can help communities become more livable for people of all ages. The grant program will provide funds for community-based projects related to housing, transportation, public space, technology (“smart cities”), civic engagement, and more. Grants can range from several hundred dollars for smaller, short-term activities to several thousand or tens of thousands of dollars for larger projects. EXTENDED Deadline: May 15, 2020. Click Here
  6. Community Ties Giving Program – Union Pacific Foundation: Building upon Union Pacific’s heritage, the mission of the Union Pacific Community Ties Giving Program is to build safe, prosperous, and vibrant communities by investing in high-quality nonprofits and programs in the cities and towns in which Union Pacific operates and their employees live and work. These grants are focused in the areas of safety, workforce development, and community spaces. Union Pacific is committed to supporting the local economy by building and enhancing community spaces that contribute to the distinct identity of a city or town, creating destinations where families, businesses, and visitors want to be. Typical grant awards range from $2,500 to $25,000 for a one year grant. Deadline: May 31, 2020.  Click Here
  7. Building Vibrant Communities – Bank of America Charitable Foundation: Vibrant communities are places where individuals can thrive and succeed and have the opportunity to live and work with safe, decent housing, transportation to jobs, strong business corridors and thriving arts and culture districts. All of these are essential to an individual’s overall economic mobility. Bank of America supports local and regional revitalization efforts taking a approach to building thriving communities, create economic opportunity and livable neighborhoods. This includes support of economic drivers such as arts and cultural institutions that contribute to the overall vitality of the community. Available to communities in the Kansas City and St. Louis metro areas. Deadline: Applications accepted beginning June 1, 2020 through June 26, 2020. Click Here

DIAMONDS IN THE ROUGH grants are to restore or reconstruct the facades of buildings that have been heavily altered over the years. The purpose is to return them to their historic appearance and potentially qualify them for historic register designation (local or national). These grants are part of the SHPO's Preserving Oregon Grant Program for the 2019-2021 biennium. Grants may be awarded up to $20,000. These grants are funded in part by the Oregon Cultural Trust.
Application Deadline: TBA, Applications will open late January 2020
For more information:

The Future of Shopping Small
Grant Program

 American Express is teaming up with Main Street America to give 10 small business owners $10,000 each to help their businesses thrive. The American Express Future of Shopping Small Grant Program is intended to support small businesses that are looking to implement new technology and strategies, ultimately helping them navigate the current challenges facing the retail and servicing industries and strengthen older and historic commercial districts.

The deadline to apply for the grant is March 31, 2020 or whenever the first 3,000 applications have been submitted, whichever is sooner. Learn more about the program on our website and apply here. Be sure to tell your small business owners to review the Program Terms prior to submitting their application.

Oregon Historic Theater Grant – Preparation you can start now!

Oregon Parks and Recreation Department (OPRD), which includes the Oregon Main Street Network and the State Historic Preservation Office (SHPO), was awarded $665,000 in federal grant funding to implement a grant program for the preservation of historic theaters.  The grant was one of nine awarded nationally through the National Park Service Historic Revitalization Subgrant Program.

Applications for the Oregon Historic Theater Grant will open later this winter with a deadline in spring 2020.  This is a matching grant program for amounts between $15,000 - $100,000. Key requirements include:
  • The property is listed in the National Register of Historic Places or is eligible and becomes listed during the grant period.
  • The project meets the Secretary of the Interior’s Standards for Historic Preservation.
  • The theater is in a community with a population of 30,000 or less.

Applicants can be private property owners, local governments, state agencies, and nonprofits. The theater owner does not have to be the applicant; however, the owner must provide a letter in support of the work.
Restore Oregon, our nonprofit partner, is happy to help with advance grant preparation.
  • Complete and submit the Historic Resource Record – If the property is not listed in the National Register, complete and submit this as soon as possible. This document may take some time to complete as it requires current photos, historic photos if available, and historical information.
  • Project Planning – Establish priorities for work to be completed and why, study the preservation standards, develop plans and drawings, begin seeking estimates for work.
  • Financial Planning – Begin seeking sources of matching funds, discuss grant income and tax implications with your financial planner.

For assistance from Restore Oregon contact Katelyn Weber at , 503-946-6379. For questions about the grant contact Kuri Gill, , 503-986-0685 or visit

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Main Street Union and Economic Development Committee’s mission is to enhance the quality of life in Union Oregon by leveraging the community...