Meet the 2021 Finalists

2021 Impact100 Traverse City Grant Finalists

We are thrilled to announce the 2021 Impact100 Traverse City grant finalists.

EDUCATION FINALIST:

COGNITION SCIENCE & DISCOVERY CENTER

INITIATIVE: Earth & Space Lab

Cognition science and discovery center in Beulah, presents an initiative to transform a portion of its expanded facility into a cutting-edge Earth and Space Lab.  

A portable planetarium, with inflatable dome theater and expansive science curriculum, will provide families a multitude of immersive experiences including star and planet study, geography, and meteorology.

Four interactive Virtual Reality stations will provide high-tech simulation experiences for multiple age, interest, educational, and developmental levels.  Programs include space exploration, skills training, safe driving and flight simulators, career exploration, and art and design.

These experiences enhance Cognition’s STEM focus and will complement local school district curriculum, providing field-trip and assembly options. A “Mobile Lab” will be created using a cargo trailer, enabling Cognition to take both planetarium and VR experiences to organizations throughout the five-county region.   Providing high-quality educational experiences that many residents are otherwise unable to access, increases opportunities for at-risk youth and low-income families. Read more

ENVIRONMENT, PRESERVATION, & RECREATION:

NORTH COUNTRY TRAIL ASSOCIATION

INITIATIVE: North Boardman River Boardwalk & NCT Trailhead

The North Boardman River Boardwalk and North Country Trail (NCT) Trailhead is a cooperative project between Kalkaska DDA, Grand Traverse Hiking Club Chapter and Kalkaska Trail Town partners. Our goals are to eliminate road walk sections of the NCT, move them to a safer and more natural setting along the North Branch of the Boardman River and to install an ADA compliant trailhead and trail within Village limits.

At the trailhead, there will be educational signage installed about trail use, trail etiquette and additional information on connecting trails. From the trailhead, 0.2 miles of ADA compliant trail will be connected to a series of bridges over the river which will be open to non-motorized trail users. 2.2 miles of on-road trail will be removed to a dedicated natural trail along the river. This project will transform the visibility of the NCT and non-motorized activities within Kalkaska County. Read more

HEALTH & WELLNESS FINALIST:

EL GRUPO NORTE YOUTH CYCLING

INITIATIVE: Grand Traverse Bike Education Center at Civic Center Park

At the heart of good health is movement. 

And Norte believes in empowering kids — and those who love them — to sit less and move more as part of ordinary life, like walking to school or biking to the library. This effort is at the heart of transforming northern Michigan’s culture of health.

Norte is actively planning a two-phase construction expansion project and capital campaign to support expanded services to meet ever-increasing community demand, and change the odds in favor of happy, healthy, strong families. 

The expansion includes a world-class and family-friendly Pump Track that will build skills and confidence for all ages and abilities. 

A fun quarter-mile Traffic Garden will teach safety and adventure.

A sustainably built Educational Center will provide expanded space for current and new programs. The center will host the Community Bike Shop and Kids’ Bike Library and bring Norte’s operations under one roof. Read more

FAMILY FINALIST:

GRASS RIVER NATURAL AREA, INC.

INITIATIVE: Boardwalk Renovations for Universal Access

Access to nature provides significant and vital benefits to mental, physical, and emotional well-being. Grass River Natural Area (GRNA) is committed to ensuring people of all abilities can experience the natural world on a series of universally accessible boardwalks, which immerse visitors in a unique and biologically diverse ecosystem. 

GRNA is requesting funds to replace an aging section of existing boardwalk with a six-foot wide barrier-free pathway, free span bridges across the coldwater creeks, ADA accessible observation platforms for views of stunning landscapes, and an enlarged dock with a universally accessible kayak launch at the Grass River. 

These crucial improvements will create a safe space where children will find joy and wonder in the flight of a butterfly, where adults will come to quiet their minds, and where people of all backgrounds and abilities will feel the comfort and solace that comes from time spent in nature. Read more

ARTS & CULTURE FINALIST:

CROSSHATCH CENTER FOR ART & ECOLOGY, (CO-APPLICANT WITH) COMMONGROUNDS COOPERATIVE

INITIATIVE: Commongrounds + Crosshatch Performance Venue

Crosshatch and Commongrounds have partnered to meet the outspoken community arts need of “missing middle” art spaces, by developing a dedicated 150-seat performance venue to be housed within the community-owned walls of Commongrounds Cooperative. 

The partnerships’ Music and Events Venue is a state-of-the-art room, serving our region’s music, theater, dance, and wellness communities through a rich calendar of concerts, storytelling series, residencies, workshops, classes, and exhibitions—with virtual options for participation available for nearly every use of space.

Through stakeholder engagement and programming partnerships, we lower the barrier of participation in the performing arts for youth, elders, BIPOC, and members of our regional arts community at-large—both patrons and creators—by providing a cultivated place and culture where the energy resonates with each moment, where safety and trust are paramount, where play is standard, and where innovation and connection are nurtured– beginning in June of 2022 upon building completion. Read more

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