Main Street expands grant opportunities downtown

With the success of the Façade Grant Program offered by Claremore Main Street, the nonprofit organization announces an expanded program, including five new grants.

Grant opportunities include Awning Grant, Lighting & Signage Grant, Windows & Doors Grant, Paint Grant and a Storefront Grant.

“We are thrilled to expand our popular Façade Grant Program to include new, specific grants,” said Jessica Jackson, Claremore Main Street Director. “In the last year, we’ve had two grants projects completed and two more in the works right now.”

Each grant offers a dollar-for-dollar match, essentially doubling the applicant’s dollars not to exceed $1,000 payout.

The program has quarterly deadlines for building owners to apply when it is most convenient for them. The next deadline is Sept. 30.

“We know that building improvements can be expensive, so we’re happy to be able to help share that cost and reduce the burden for property owners,” Jackson said.

While the grants are targeted to property owners in particular, renters are welcome to apply with the property owner’s permission.

The Awning Grant is for repair, replacement or addition of awnings.

The Lighting and Signage Grant is for repair, replacement or additions for exterior lighting as well as for signage.

The Window and Door Grant offsets the cost for window or door repair and replacement as well as transom repair and replacement.

The Paint Grant is available for exterior painting, with the exclusion of painting unpainted brick, as well as murals or public art desired on the property.

The Storefront Grant includes masonry or mortar joint repair, replacement or repair of architectural details, removal of non-historic materials and other improvements.

Applications must be completed in full, including a detailed description of the project, bids or quotes and photos, and be turned in by the deadline. Projects must be completed within six months of the award notification.

To be considered, applicants must be within the Claremore Main Street Boundaries, which extend from Lynn Riggs Boulevard to Chickasaw Avenue and from 4th Street to Patti Page Boulevard.

Applications will be given priority if they prove high visual impact, historic or architectural integrity, lasting improvements and are on an active street front or include a public entrance.

The Façade Grant Program began in April of 2017. The inaugural recipient was Carol Thibodeau, owner of Rhapsody Boutique & Spa, 318 W. Will Rogers Blvd., for a new awning on the building’s storefront.

Last fall, Claremore Main Street awarded a grant to the Rogers County Historical Society for help paying for the repairing, caulking, re-glazing and painting windows and trim at the Belvidere Mansion.

In August, Kevin Fortna, CPA, was awarded two grants – one for the front and one for the rear of his building at 512 W. Will Rogers Blvd.  Those projects are expected to be completed in the fall.

In addition to the five new grants with the Façade Grant Program, Claremore Main Street also offers a Beautification & Improvement Grant, which is for smaller beautification projects such as planters, outdoor décor, holiday decorations or window displays. The B&I Grants have monthly deadlines and are worth $75.

Claremore Main Street is dedicated to its mission to enrich downtown Claremore by promoting a healthy downtown economy and advocating for revitalization and historic preservation. It is a 501(c)3 nonprofit organization that was established in 2002.

For more information, call Jackson at 918-341-5881 or email . Applications can be downloaded here.

Fresh Paint Days to transform downtown Claremore building

One downtown Claremore building will have an all new look with a fresh coat of paint thanks to Claremore Main Street volunteers and Keep Oklahoma Beautiful’s Fresh Paint Days grant.

Volunteers will gather on Monday (Sept. 17) evening to paint the outside of downtown’s centermost building, 409 W. Will Rogers Blvd. The store, formerly the Willow Tree Mall, is in the process of re-branding to the name Back in the Day.

“I’m so excited about Fresh Paint Days. It’s going to greatly improve the look of my store and our street,” said Ronda Cole, owner of Back in the Day. “The timing is perfect since I’m re-branding my store I’ll have a new look for a new name!”

The “Paint Party” will begin at 5 p.m. and will go through 8 p.m. Supplies and dinner will be provided to volunteers, whether they’re able to give just an hour or stay for the duration. All are welcome.

“This is the second year in a row we’ve participated in Fresh Paint Days,” said Jessica Jackson, director of Claremore Main Street. “It’s a great opportunity to really put some sweat equity into our wonderful downtown to support businesses and improve the area.”

Additionally, each volunteer who signs in will be entered into a drawing to win a $50 gift card to Back in the Day.

Claremore’s local Sherwin Williams store is a community partner, donating primer, paint supplies and t-shirts for all volunteers.

The volunteer painters will be replacing orange and black paint with recycled, almond-colored H-I-S paint provided by the grant.

Fresh Paint Days is a program founded on the collaboration between H-I-S Paint and Keep Oklahoma Beautiful. KOB, with the help of sponsors, provides the paint and a stipend for supplies; selected communities supply the volunteers. This program has helped to revitalize communities across Oklahoma with a fresh coat of paint.

Claremore Main Street and Back in the Day are among 43 participating groups working on chosen projects across the state.

H-I-S Paint and Keep Oklahoma Beautiful started the Fresh Paint Days program in 2005.

“H-I-S Paint is thrilled with the transformations that are being made within each of the communities participating in the Fresh Paint Days in Oklahoma initiative,” said Joe Cox, founder and CEO of H-I-S Paint. “It’s amazing how a fresh coat of paint can help to transform the entire community.”

Amelia Schoenhals, the projects coordinator for KOB, works with potential participants throughout the application process.

“I am honored to be able to assist communities in renewing their pride for the town they have built a life in,” Schoenhals said. “The participants of Fresh Paint Days truly exemplify how Oklahomans can make a change by working together, asking for help and applying a vision for the future.”

Claremore Main Street is dedicated to its mission to enrich downtown Claremore by promoting a healthy downtown economy and advocating for revitalization and historic preservation. It is a 501(c)3 nonprofit organization that was established in 2002.

For more information, call Jackson at 918-341-5881 or email .