Three Main Street America Staff members standing in front of a mural in Marion, Iowa.

Marion, Iowa © Tasha Sams

About

We work in collaboration with thousands of local partners and grassroots leaders across the nation who share our commitment to advancing shared prosperity, creating resilient economies, and improving quality of life.

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Two community members in Emporia Kansas pose with a sign saying "I'm a Main Streeter"

Emporia, Kansas © Emporia Main Street

Our Network

Made up of small towns, mid-sized communities, and urban commercial districts, the thousands of organizations, individuals, volunteers, and local leaders that make up Main Street America™ represent the broad diversity that makes this country so unique.

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Dionne Baux and MSA partner working in Bronzeville, Chicago.

Chicago, Illinois © Main Street America

Resources

Looking for strategies and tools to support you in your work? Delve into the Main Street Resource Center and explore a wide range of resources including our extensive Knowledge Hub, professional development opportunities, field service offerings, advocacy support, and more!

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People riding e-scooters in Waterloo, Iowa

Waterloo, Iowa © Main Street Waterloo

The Latest

Your one-stop-shop for all the latest stories, news, events, and opportunities – including grants and funding programs – across Main Street.

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Woman and girl at a festival booth in Kendall Whittier, Tulsa, Oklahoma.

Kendall Whittier — Tulsa, Oklahoma © Kendall Whittier Main Street

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Join us in our work to advance shared prosperity, create strong economies, and improve quality of life in downtowns and neighborhood commercial districts.

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Three Main Street America Staff members standing in front of a mural in Marion, Iowa.

Marion, Iowa © Tasha Sams

About

We work in collaboration with thousands of local partners and grassroots leaders across the nation who share our commitment to advancing shared prosperity, creating resilient economies, and improving quality of life.

Overview Who We Are How We Work Partner Collaborations Our Supporters Our Team Job Opportunities Contact Us
Two community members in Emporia Kansas pose with a sign saying "I'm a Main Streeter"

Emporia, Kansas © Emporia Main Street

Our Network

Made up of small towns, mid-sized communities, and urban commercial districts, the thousands of organizations, individuals, volunteers, and local leaders that make up Main Street America™ represent the broad diversity that makes this country so unique.

Overview Coordinating Programs Main Street Communities Collective Impact Awards & Recognition Community Evaluation Framework Join the Movement
Dionne Baux and MSA partner working in Bronzeville, Chicago.

Chicago, Illinois © Main Street America

Resources

Looking for strategies and tools to support you in your work? Delve into the Main Street Resource Center and explore a wide range of resources including our extensive Knowledge Hub, professional development opportunities, field service offerings, advocacy support, and more!

Overview Knowledge Hub Field Services Government Relations Main Street Now Conference Main Street America Institute Small Business Support Allied Member Services The Point Members Area
People riding e-scooters in Waterloo, Iowa

Waterloo, Iowa © Main Street Waterloo

The Latest

Your one-stop-shop for all the latest stories, news, events, and opportunities – including grants and funding programs – across Main Street.

Overview News & Stories Events & Opportunities Subscribe
Woman and girl at a festival booth in Kendall Whittier, Tulsa, Oklahoma.

Kendall Whittier — Tulsa, Oklahoma © Kendall Whittier Main Street

Get Involved

Join us in our work to advance shared prosperity, create strong economies, and improve quality of life in downtowns and neighborhood commercial districts.

Overview Join Us Renew Your Membership Donate Partner With Us Job Opportunities
A small group of people stand in front of a building while hold an oversized check.

Lincoln Park — Duluth, Minnesota © Main Street Lincoln Park

Main Street Lincoln Park in Duluth, Minnesota, was one of six winners of the Main Street Forward Awards, which recognized communities that showed exemplary recovery and resilience efforts amid the multiple crises of 2020. Selected by a national jury of economic development experts, Main Street Lincoln Park (MS LNPK) was honored for its work to ensure the Lincoln Park community had access to food, funding, and other essential resources during 2020.

As an area that has experienced multiple social and economic challenges, Lincoln Park could have faced a serious blow with the pandemic. Yet longtime community group Ecolibrium3 stepped up its efforts to address the neighborhood’s needs and support local businesses — and Lincoln Park has emerged stronger for it.”

- Patrice Frey, President and CEOMSA

Visit Main Street Lincoln Park
A person places snacks into paper grocery bags.

A volunteer prepares bagged lunches. © Main Street Lincoln Park

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Ecolibrium3 has been a resource for Lincoln Park since 2004, spearheading initiatives to address climate change, reduce poverty, and spur economic growth in the historically disinvested area. As 2020 began, Ecolibrium3 had planned to accelerate its revitalization efforts by forming an official economic development arm, Main Street Lincoln Park, and joining the national Main Street America network. Then the pandemic hit — and Ecolibrium3’s efforts to support the local economy became even more important.

As COVID-19 shuttered businesses nationwide, Ecolibrium3 and the newly formed MS LNPK got to work, taking a comprehensive and innovative approach to recovery. Our strategy centered on three main goals: keeping the neighborhood fed, connecting residents and businesses to essential resources, and ensuring health and welfare for all,” said Jodi Slick, founder and CEO of Ecolibrium3.

Because Lincoln Park is an urban food desert, MS LNPK was especially concerned that the pandemic would make it harder for residents to access healthy, affordable food. When restaurants were closed in March, MS LNPK volunteers staffed a free farmers market sponsored by Bent Paddle Brewing and Sysco. MS LNPK also coordinated fundraising and distribution for 3,500 meals delivered to neighborhood children while schools were closed.

  • In a surface parking lot, a woman stands behind a table covered with cardboard boxes and paper bags filled with fresh produce.

    Ecolibrium3 VISTA volunteer coordinates meals for Duluth Lincoln Park’s children. © Main Street Lincoln Park

  • People assembling face shields.

    Supporting local youth programming through Pay It Forward PPE production. © Main Street Lincoln Park

To ensure that businesses and residents had access to the economic resources they needed to survive the pandemic, MS LNPK quickly mobilized funding and expertise. The group curated resource guides, provided technical assistance and scenario planning, hosted webinars on the Paycheck Protection Program, trained businesses on strategy for conversations with banks and landlords, and met with government leaders to advocate for the district. MS LNPK also offered $10,000 in safe reopening grants, partnered with US Bank and the Local Initiatives Support Corporation to offer $40,000 in COVID recovery funding, developed district safety protocols and signage, and added new garbage and recycling cans in the community when the city eliminated garbage collection due to COVID-related budget shortfalls.

MS LNPK’s pandemic response also included several efforts to ensure health and wellness, including Pay it Forward PPE, a partnership with Duluth outdoor goods manufacturer Frost River. While Frost River shifted its production to face masks, Ecolibrium3 and MS LNPK recruited more than 1,000 volunteers to assemble 225,000 face shields at a local indoor football field. Pay it Forward PPE distributed the equipment to community members, Main Street businesses, and youth and equity-based organizations. After George Floyd’s death, Pay it Forward PPE also gave masks to protestors and donated 2,000 masks to the Minneapolis NAACP.

As the Pay it Forward PPE project garnered media and community attention, MS LNPK leveraged the exposure to benefit local businesses by accelerating the development, marketing, design, and launch of the Main Street LNPK gift card. Since the program was introduced, MS LNPK has generated nearly $25,000 in gift card purchases — all of which goes to support local businesses.

Lincoln Park in Duluth is a new Minnesota Main Street partner, and we have been so inspired by positive energy that has come to Lincoln Park-Duluth in light of the COVID-19 pandemic,” said Emily Kurash Casey, Rural Programs Coordinator for Rethos. The fast planning, forethought, and attention to true community needs and desires has allowed Lincoln Park to flourish in a time of crisis. The symbiotic partnership of business with non-profit with greater community that Lincoln Park has created is true Main Street leadership.”