Monday, August 27, 2007

Main Street Arkansas Update - August 27, 2007

August 27-31

Monday -
Tuesday - Mark, Paragould – lunch joint civic clubs ER presentation
Wednesday - Cary, Mark, Susan – Helena, Window Display Workshop

Thursday - Cary, Mark, Susan – Helena, Window Display Workshop; GregHelena, Visioning Workshop
Friday – Nancy, Susan - NLR – mini-grant review

INTENT TO NOMINATE FORMS DUE IN OUR OFFICE FRIDAY! Every program should have something worthy of nomination for a MSA award. If you’re new & unsure what to nominate, contact one of us, or better yet, an experienced volunteer with your program.

Heber Springs has hired Sumer Garrison as their new Executive Director. Sumer attended orientation Friday and will be at Destination Downtown next month.







Main Street Rogers Grant Press:

Main Street Searcy Promotes the MBG:

Frisco Festival Press:

Cultural Arts District Discussed for Downtown Fayetteville:

note the mention of 1% for the arts near the end of the article.

Good Press for the AHPP:

NLR Looks to Create 4 TIF Districts Downtown subscriber only, sorry.

Nice piece on the El Dorado Promise:

nice quote “. . . the city’s Main Street—which is, and this is a sarcasm-free aside, vibrant and happening. Ever been to Main Street in Little Rock ? Think of the exact opposite and you’ve got Main Street El Dorado. But that’s another story for another time.. . .”

Google Earth Outreach Offered to Nonprofits

Google is offering its satellite imagery system to U.S. nonprofits for their use in creating videos and other materials to better educate the public about their missions, programs and impact.

Google Earth allows users to search for a location and then view that location using satellite imagery and three-dimensional maps. Users can not only view the terrains on maps of geographical areas around the world, but also find their houses and even get directions.

Google is now offering Google Earth Outreach, a program designed to give nonprofits the resources and tools they need to leverage Google Earth for their own missions. The Outreach website contains online guides and video tutorials on how to use the system, as well as a moderated forum to foster discussion, exchange ideas and provide technical support.

Utilizing the maps, various nonprofits have shown how diseases have spread to different parts of the world, tracked population distribution and migrations and given viewers a tour of an animal preserve. Examples of how charities have applied the satellite imagery system for their own programs are available on the Google Earth Outreach website.

Google also is granting free Google Earth Pro licenses to qualifying 501(c)(3) nonprofit organizations. Google Earth Pro has several additional features, including GIS data importation, a movie-making module and a high-resolution printing feature. Organizations must apply for a license, and not every organization will receive one. More information about applying for a license can be found on the Google Earth Outreach website.


1. Volunteer Management

2. Brownfields Communities

3. Microbusiness

4. Planning for Local Museums

5. NTHP Matching Grants

6. Interpreting Historic Places

Grants for Volunteer Management

The Corporation for National and Community Service (the Corporation) announces the availability of up to $800,000 for grants to support the efforts of national and statewide nonprofit organizations to increase volunteer retention and expand the use volunteers to address societal challenges. Grants may range in size from approximately $50,000 to $200,000. The purpose of this grant competition is to assist national, regional, and statewide nonprofit organizations in planning for and implementing activities within their networks and communities to:

• increase volunteer retention;

• expand current use of volunteers by creating new volunteer roles and recruiting the appropriate volunteers to fill them;

• improve both the impact of volunteers’ activities and how that impact is measured; and

• develop strategies that sustain the impact and results associated with the project after the conclusion of Corporation funding. Examples of the types of activities this grant may support include:

• assessing current volunteer use and management practices;

• designing competency-based volunteer roles and descriptions;

• engaging stakeholders in collaborative planning and implementation processes;

• developing new or improved measurement systems to track the impact of volunteers;

• conducting recruitment activities or developing strategic partnerships to attract the appropriate volunteers to fill newly created volunteer roles; and

• implementing volunteer management practices -- such as screening, orientation, training, and recognition -- to increase retention.

Applicants should demonstrate how their proposed project would, over a two-year period, significantly improve retention, expand their current use of volunteers, and help them improve and better measure the impact of their volunteers. Organizations are encouraged to collaborate with existing volunteer connector organizations in planning and implementing their proposed activities. Volunteer connectors are organizations that specialize in assisting individuals or groups with finding appropriate volunteer opportunities while also providing organizations that use volunteers with services such as recruitment support and training and technical assistance related to volunteer management.

Grants for Brownfields Communities

Microbusiness Grant Opportunity

The Self-Employment Tax Initiative (SETI), a project of CFED, announces a Request For Proposal to development tax preparation products for start-up microbusinesses is now available. It can be downloaded at CFED's homepage ( An accompanying "Background Paper" is also available in the "What's New?" section (right hand column). If you have questions or trouble downloading, please contact Gene Severens(

SETI is a new CFED project that is exploring both:

* the use of self-employment tax preparation ("Schedule C")as a product that can scale-up direct support to start-up microbusinesses and

* the use of the tax code (federal and state) as a new policy tool to direct new support to microbusiness start-ups.

The grant funding for this RFP is made available through the support of the Citigroup Foundation. Other support comes from the eBay Foundations and Annie E. Casey Foundation.

The DEADLINE is September 15, 2007. Award amounts $10,000.

A Q & A CONFERENCE CALL will be held on Tuesday, August 28, 2007 at 3:00 PM (Eastern); 12:00 PM (Pacific) (see RFP for details).

Planning Grant for Local Museums

National Trust Matching Grants

Applications are due October 1 for the next round of matching grants from the National Trust Preservation Funds, Cynthia Woods Mitchell Fund for Historic Interiors and the Johanna Favrot Fund for Historic Preservation. Your National Trust regional office can help you figure out which is best for you.

Deadline: 10/1/2007
For more information: Contact your National Trust Regional Office

Interpreting America's Historic Places Grants:

The National Endowment for the Humanities (NEH) offers Planning Grants and Implementation Grants to support public humanities programs that use one or more historic sites to interpret important topics in American history. Projects can interpret a single historic site, a series of sites, whole neighborhoods, communities or towns or larger geographic areas. They can include exhibits, interpretive materials, heritage tourism partnerships, or other strategies for helping the public learn more about your historic place. More information is available at

Tuesday, August 21, 2007

Hardy Letter to the Editor

Posted below is a Letter to the Editor of the Hardy, AR newspaper we wrote in response to a comment quoted in the previous week's edition.

Dear Editor,

I’m compelled to respond to the recent comments in your newspaper “We have put $101,000 in Main Street since its inception. We’re not seeing the improvements we ought to be seeing.

For the record, in Main Street Hardy’s thirteen years of existence, that investment averages $7,769.23 per year. For that investment Main Street Hardy has received $82,853.96 in Main Street Arkansas grant funds, $21,500 in board and staff development training, $11,950 in technical assistance (architectural, small business and interior design assistance) and has leveraged 7,161 volunteer hours. These hours invested are valued at $69,771.06 by the Independent Sector, the nation’s leading non-profit advocate. Downtown Hardy has also seen net gains of 52 businesses and 212 jobs since it began in 1994. Hardy has experienced an investment of $232,800 in private funds in its downtown.

So, that $101,000 investment by the city and the citizens of Hardy has returned $418,815.02.

However, that return on investment would be endangered if the city were to eliminate its commitment to Main Street Hardy. In fact, it would send a signal that the city no longer values its historic downtown enough to continue to invest in professional management of the area. Downtown revitalization and Main Street provides a context for development to occur. Strengthening the downtown core creates a solid employment base for the entire community and for future development. It shows that a community is striving to improve and that a community cares about both its history and its future. Downtown is the most visible indicator of a community’s pride, and a program like Main Street Hardy shows that there is concern about progress. It is evidence that a community has accepted responsibility for its fate.

Downtown Hardy is a major tourist draw. When people travel, they want to see unique places. Downtown Hardy is that unique place. In a town the size of Hardy, it’s particularly worth noting that your downtown represents a significant portion of your community's tax base. If this district declines, its property will decrease in value. This increases the tax burden on other parts of your community.

Hardy is unique not just for its architecture or its proximity to the Spring River, or for wisely embracing all the benefits that come with its geography. It’s unique for being the smallest community in the Main Street Arkansas network and is seen and touted as a model small community. It’s extraordinary that a town with a population well under 1,000 could accomplish so much, including hosting a Main Street program. This is an accomplishment that towns ten times the size of Hardy often can’t achieve.

On behalf of the Main Street Arkansas program and staff, I hope that the current leadership will continue to support Main Street Hardy and continue to partner with Main Street Arkansas to build upon the progress so many have worked so hard to create.


Cary Tyson
Director, Main Street Arkansas

Monday, August 20, 2007

August 20, 2007 MSA Update

August 20-24

Monday - Greg - Rogers
Tuesday -
Wednesday - Susan, Mark – Batesville

Thursday - Susan & Nancy – Searcy
Friday – Orientation – Anita, Blytheville; Summer, Heber Springs, MSA Library






More Good Press for Main Street Rogers:

State’s Work to Plug Brain Drain:

Arkansas Business Publishing Group will recognize outstanding Arkansas companies, executives and nonprofit organizations with the 20th Anniversary Arkansas Business of the Year Awards. You may nominate by visiting or complete the nomination form in this week’s Arkansas Business by Friday, September 28

American City & County Municipal Leader of the Year and Crown Communities Awards

American City & County has extended the deadline to submit nominations for the Municipal Leader of the Year and the Crown Communities – Cities awards until Aug. 24.

Municipal Leader of the Year nominees can be any city employee or elected official who has demonstrated outstanding leadership in the last year. The winner is profiled in the November issue of the magazine and recognized at the National League of Cities’ Annual Conference.

Crown Communities – Cities nominations can include any project completed by a city government between November 2006 and August 2007. The winners are featured in the December issue and recognized at the National League of Cities’ Annual Conference. Projects can encompass virtually any aspect of city government.

There are no restrictions on who can submit nominations. Download entry forms for all of the awards at Call Bill Wolpin at 770-618-0112 or e-mail for additional information.

Worldwide Grant Program

Tourism Cares’ Worldwide Grant Program distributes charitable grants to worthy tourism-related non-profit organizations worldwide for capital improvements or programs as outlined below. The 2007 Worldwide Grant Program goals for grantmaking call for a balanced distribution to U.S. and non-U.S. recipients. Typical grants are $10,000; However, based on availability of funds, grants up to $100,000 will be considered. The steps to the grant funding process can be found below. Our Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs) about the Worldwide Grant Program attempt to address other questions that are not explained elsewhere.

2007 Deadlines for Grant Letters of Inquiry Packets:
Thursday, February 1st, Friday, June 1st, and Monday, October 1st
Grant Letters of Inquiry Packets must ARRIVE AT Tourism Cares’ OFFICE NO LATER THAN 5 PM on these deadline dates.

Tourism Cares’ Grant Funding Goals and Preferences

Primary consideration is to fund projects and programs, whose goal is:

• capital improvements that serve to protect, restore, or conserve sites of exceptional cultural, historic, or natural significance, or
• the education of local host communities and the traveling public about conservation and preservation of sites of exceptional cultural, historical, or natural significance.

Preference is given to organizations with projects or programs that

• allow our grant funding to be leveraged to provide increased philanthropic support, through vehicles such as matching grants or challenge grants that have already been secured from an external source.
• are endorsed by the local, regional, or national tourism office.
• demonstrate strong support from and involvement of the local community.

It’s An Experience-Driven World

California-based consultant Stephanie Weaver wrote an article, "It's an Experience-driven World," in the latest issue of Main Street News. It’s about creating a great customer experience within your Main Street district.

As a bonus for this article, she will give away a copy of her new book "Creating Great Visitor Experiences: A Guide for Museums, Parks, Zoos, Gardens, and Libraries," to a reader who submits a brief story (250 words) with 3 photos for her blog, describing how you are creating a better experience for visitors to your Main Street. E-mail entries to

Stephanie will choose the winner from all entries received by August 31, 2007.

NTHP accepting nominations for 2008 Dozen Distinctive Destinations

Nomination forms for the 2008 list of America's Dozen Distinctive Destinations are now available online. To be considered as one of a Dozen Distinctive Destinations, a place must provide an authentic and dynamic visitor experience; have a heritage tourism infrastructure, such as unique shopping, dining or lodging (e.g. historic hotels); have interesting and attractive historic architecture and/or cultural landscapes; and organizations actively working to promote and protect the community's historic assets. The deadline for the nomination is September 28 and can be found at For more information about the program or the nomination process, please visit or contact Carrie Johnson at 202-588-6141 or e-mail

Monday, August 13, 2007


LITTLE ROCK—Main Street Arkansas will hold two free workshops in Helena during August, Main Street Arkansas Director Cary Tyson announced today. Main Street Arkansas is a program area of the Arkansas Historic Preservation Program.

Greg Phillips, Main Street Arkansas assistant director, will lead a visioning workshop from 5:30 to 7:30 p.m. on Wednesday, August 15, at the Delta Cultural Center at 141 Cherry Street.

Susan Shaddox, Main Street Arkansas design consultant, and Mark Miller, Main Street Arkansas small business consultant, will hold a marketing and window display workshop beginning at 5:30 p.m. on Wednesday, August 29, at the Delta Cultural Center.

Both workshops are free and open to the public. For additional information, contact Main Street Helena Executive Director Paula Oliver at (870) 338-9144.

Main Street Arkansas Update, August 13-17, 2007

August 13-17

Monday - Susan, Mark, Nancy - Dumas
Tuesday - Susan & Nancy – Russellville
Wednesday -

Thursday - Cary & Mark – Brinkley, RHDI Business Development Taskforce
Friday –










The Historic Preservation Alliance of Arkansas has issued a call for nominations for their annual awards. For more, check out

The Model Business Grant cycle will open next Monday, August, 20. It will close October 19. Applications must be in our office by 4:30 that day. If you have a potential project, please visit with a staff member. More information next week.

Creativity in the Natural State: Growing Arkansas’s Creative Economy

Part 1 of a 3 phase project, in conjunction with the Arkansas Arts Council – pdf file:

Main Street Rogers Plays Role in City’s Long Term Planning

Press for the Helena Blues Festival in the NY Times:

Praise for HandMade in America:

Becky Anderson of HandMade in America is one of the keynote speakers at ArtLinks, the Arkansas Arts Council’s annual conference. This year’s conference is scheduled for October 21-22 in Rogers.

Volunteerism and Holistic Community Development: The Main Street Paradigm

Interesting piece in the International Journal of Volunteer Administration. It focuses on the Main Street program. Read or download it here (pdf file):

Grant Opportunity

My Hometown Helper Grants to Improve Communities Across United States

Deadline: September 30, 2007

Hamburger Helper, a General Mills brand, has announced its 2007 “My Hometown Helper" grant program, a nationwide initiative that helps local groups make a difference in their own community.

People looking to improve their hometown -- whether by building a new playground, funding new band uniforms, or expanding town sidewalks -- can apply for a one-time grant to help fund their project.

Applicants are invited to submit an essay of 250 words or less describing how the grant would help their community project.

Award amounts will range from $500 to $15,000 each and all requests for funding must be sponsored by a municipal or civic organization or a public school. Funds will be awarded based on the merit of the project, including its impact on, and support within, the community.

Last year, "My Hometown Helper" gave away more than $100,000 in total grants and helped communities install lights for a football field, clean up a local river, and purchase ambulance equipment, among other great projects.

For more information on the "My Hometown Helper" grant program and a complete set of rules, visit the program's Web site.

20 Arkansas communities received Hamburger Helper grants last year.

Mosaic Templars Want List:

The mission of the Mosaic Templars Cultural Center is to collect, preserve, interpret and celebrate Arkansas’s African American history, culture, and community from 1870 to the present, and to inform and educate the public about black achievements – especially in business, politics, and the arts.

Specifically MTCC is looking for items related to Black-owned business related, Mosaic Templars of America (MTA), African American life in Arkansas, 1870 to 1970

More information here:

MTCC will also gladly accept donations and/or long term loans. With questions regarding artifacts and images on this list, please contact Heather Register Zbinden at 501.683.3615 or or Melissa Laney at 501.683.3616 or .

Even if you think it is junk, please give us a call and let us come look at it.

Tuesday, August 7, 2007

Historic Preservation Alliance of Arkansas Accepting Awards Nominations

The Historic Preservation Alliance of Arkansas is accepting awards nominations in the following categories:

  • Parker Westbrook Award
  • Excellence in Personal Projects
  • Outstanding Service in Neighborhood Preservation
  • Outstanding Achievement in Preservation Advocacy
  • Outstanding New Construction in an Historic Setting
  • Outstanding Work by a Craftsperson
  • Outstanding Preservation Reporting in the Media
  • Excellence in Preservation through Rehabilitation
  • Excellence in Preservation through Restoration
  • Ned Shank Award for Outstanding Preservation Publication
  • Outstanding Achievement in Preservation Education

For more information, check out

Monday, August 6, 2007


LITTLE ROCK—Susan Shaddox, Main Street Arkansas design consultant, will hold a one-hour window display workshop beginning at 5:30 p.m. on Thursday, August 9, in the Main Street Hardy office at 203 School St. in Hardy, Main Street Arkansas Director Cary Tyson announced today. Main Street Arkansas is a program area of the Arkansas Historic Preservation Program.

Shaddox and Mark Miller, Main Street Arkansas small business consultant, also will meet with business owners on an individual basis from 12 to 4 p.m. on August 9 and from 8 a.m. to noon on August 10 to discuss merchandising, fa├žade improvements, marketing, traffic flow, and other relevant issues. For additional information, contact Main Street Hardy Executive Director Kim Wilson at (870) 856-3571.

Main Street Arkansas provides technical assistance and design services to help create economic development in the state’s downtown areas. The Main Street approach to downtown revitalization focuses on four areas: design, economic restructuring, organization and promotion.

Cities currently involved in Main Street Arkansas are Batesville, Blytheville, Dumas, El Dorado, Hardy, Harrison, Helena, North Little Rock, Osceola, Ozark, Paragould, Rogers, Russellville, Searcy, Texarkana and West Memphis. Members of Main Street’s Arkansas Downtown Network are Pine Bluff, Little Rock’s South Main Street, Heber Springs, Fort Smith and Eureka Springs. Other sponsors of the Main Street Arkansas program are the Historic Preservation Alliance of Arkansas and the Arkansas Department of Economic Development.

The Arkansas Historic Preservation Program is the agency of the Department of Arkansas Heritage responsible for the identification, evaluation, registration and preservation of the state’s cultural resources. Other agencies in the department are the Arkansas Arts Council, the Delta Cultural Center in Helena, the Mosaic Templars Cultural Center, the Old State House Museum, the Arkansas Natural Heritage Commission and the Historic Arkansas Museum.

August 6-10

Monday - Mark - Helena
Tuesday -
Wednesday - Susan & Mark – Heber Springs
Thursday - Susan & Mark - Hardy

Friday – Susan & Mark – Hardy

Caroline out until August 13, wedding

The Arkansas Historic Preservation Program, an agency of the Department of Arkansas Heritage, is soliciting comments on regional historic preservation issues through a questionnaire on its website, AHPP Director Ken Grunewald announced today.

The questionnaire is available on the AHPP website at through September 30 and comments received through the survey will help shape the agency’s goals for the next five years.




Nice press for MSA

Good press for Main Street Batesville:

Good Main Street Paragould press:

Gina visited Walnut Ridge & spoke to a group who is interested in ADN, following up on a number of visits Greg’s made.

Main Street Argenta’s mini-grant guidelines posted here:

From Arkansas Coalition for Excellence (ACE)

New State Law that Affects Non-Profits

Take a look at the information regarding Act 569 which will affect all AR nonprofit organizations.

If you currently file reports with the Arkansas Attorney General's office, you will continue to do so. This Act is a separate filing with the Arkansas Secretary of State's office. It was passed during the 2007 legislative session to ensure that the Secretary of State's office has accurate up to date information on all nonprofits in our state. This report does not require a fee. We encourage you to take a look at the information.

Act 569 of 2007 requires nonprofit corporations to file an annual report with the Arkansas Secretary of State.

The annual report will be due by August 1st of each year starting August 1, 2008.

The Arkansas Secretary of State's office is collecting the following information:

Name of the non-profit

Name of a contact person and their mailing address

E-mail address (if applicable)

Contact phone number (if applicable)

Information can be sent in the following manner:

- Fill out form on the web at

Go to Business and Commercial Services

Go to Corporations

Go to Fees, Forms and Procedures

Go to Domestic Non-Profit Corporations

Click on the link for Application for Change of Address

- E-mail to:

- Mail to: Business and Commercial Services

State Capitol

Little Rock, AR 72201-1094

-Fax to: (501) 682-3437

You may also download the attached copy of the press release from the Arkansas Secretary of State's office regarding this Act. Thank you for your interest in this important new policy. Spread the word to your organizations.

Are you a board member or officer of a non-profit organization? If so the Secretary of State’s Office needs current contact information for your organization.

During the 86th General Assembly, the legislature approved Act 569, requiring nonprofit corporations to file an annual report with the Arkansas Secretary of State’s office.

This act will help the Business and Commercial Services division update records. It requires all non-profit corporations to file an annual report which must include the name and address of the organization’s officers, directors and agent for service of process. The new annual report will be due by August 1 of 2008 and each year thereafter.

To assist the Secretary of State in updating existing but out-of-date addresses on current nonprofit entities, the office is requesting that current address and contact information be immediately submitted either by logging on to their website at, by email to, by mail to Business and Commercial Services, Arkansas Secretary of State, State Capitol, Little Rock, AR 72201, or by fax to 501-682-3437.

The first annual report, for the 2007 reporting year, will not be due until August 1, 2008. The Business and Commercial Service office plans an extensive campaign to notify non-profit corporations of this new requirement. However, the state needs immediate information regarding a current address and contact person.

Questions may be directed to a corporate team member at the above contacts, or by telephone at 501-682-3437

2007 Round of Bank Enterprise Award (BEA) Program Now Open

Thanks to AEO for this one.

This may be a little out of the typical Main Street scope, but might be worth passing on to bankers in your community as it could help out your program in the long run

· News Release: BEA FY 2007 Funding Round Announcement

· Federal Register Notice: Notice of Funds Availability (NOFA)

Through the Bank Enterprise Award (BEA) Program, the CDFI Fund supports financial institutions around the country that are dedicated to financing and supporting community and economic development activities. The BEA Program complements the community development activities of insured depository institutions (i.e., banks and thrifts) by providing financial incentives to expand investments in CDFIs and to increase lending, investment, and service activities within economically distressed communities. Providing monetary awards for increasing community development activities leverages the Funds dollars and puts more capital to work in distressed communities throughout the nation.


All depository institutions insured by the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation (FDIC) are eligible to apply for a BEA Program award.

For more detailed information, please refer to the Notice of Funds Availability (NOFA) found in the Application Materials section below.

Sunday, August 5, 2007

MSA To Co-Sponsor Tri-State Destination Downtown Conference

Main Street Arkansas will co-sponsor “Destination Downtown,” the annual tri-state conference on downtown revitalization, which will be held in Natchitoches, Louisiana, Sept. 17-19, Main Street Arkansas Director Cary Tyson announced today. Main Street Arkansas is a program of the Arkansas Historic Preservation Program.

The conference will be held Sept. 17-19, 2007, at the Natchitoches Events Center. It will feature sessions on marketing, e-commerce, revolving loan programs, business recruitment, innovation and planning, among others.

Louisiana’s Lieutenant Governor, Mitchell J. Landrieu, will deliver the opening keynote address, while Ann Daigle of the Mississippi Development Authority will deliver the closing address.

Registration is $50 for Main Street managers and board members, and $75 for others through August 24; general registration is $100 after that date.

For more information, visit or call (225) 342-8160.

Other sponsors of Destination Downtown 2007 are Louisiana Main Street and the Mississippi Main Street Association.

Main Street Arkansas provides technical assistance and design services to help create economic development in the state’s downtown areas. The Main Street approach to downtown revitalization focuses on four areas: design, economic restructuring, organization and promotion.

Cities currently involved in Main Street Arkansas are Batesville, Blytheville, Dumas, El Dorado, Hardy, Harrison, Helena, North Little Rock, Osceola, Ozark, Paragould, Rogers, Russellville, Searcy, Texarkana and West Memphis. Members of Main Street’s Arkansas Downtown Network are Pine Bluff, Little Rock’s South Main Street, Heber Springs, Eureka Springs and Fort Smith. Other sponsors of the Main Street Arkansas program are the Historic Preservation Alliance of Arkansas and the Arkansas Department of Economic Development.