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Press Release


Kathy Achtenberg, MEDC

Stephanie Adams
Executive Director - Friends of Grand Rapids Parks

Matt Bach
Director of Media Relations
Michigan Municipal League
734.669-6317; C: 810. 874.1073;


Crowdfunding Campaign Launched for UICA's Neighborhood Murals in Grand Rapids

$5.000 goal to win matching grant through MEDC's Public Spaces Community Places initiative

LANSING, Mich. – An abandoned softball and baseball facility will be fully transformed into a 16-acre multi-use Bike Park through a crowdfunding campaign, the Michigan Economic Development Corporation and Friends of Grand Rapids Parks announced today. The campaign is being offered through Michigan-based crowdfunding platform Patronicity.

If the campaign reaches its crowdfunding goal of $50,000 by June 2, the project will win a matching grant with funds made possible by MEDC’s Public Spaces Community Places program. For project details and to donate, please visit:

“The Grand Rapids Bike Park will offer multi-use recreation opportunities and attract users from across the region,” said MEDC Senior Vice President of Community Development Katharine Czarnecki. “We are pleased to provide resources for and serve as a partner in this effort under the Public Spaces Community Places program.”

This campaign will complete the Bike Park after years of efforts and phases. The park offers trails and courses for both mountain and BMX biking in addition to hiking and walking trails in a forested setting outside the city. The pieces that will be completed with this funding are a youth pump track, an advanced pump track, a bike playground, and amenities to add walking, bird watching, and running uses to the back of the park. With these improvements, Grand Rapids Bike Park will have amenities for a wide range of users from toddlers and beginners to advanced adult cyclists.

"We are thrilled to begin a community campaign in partnership with the MEDC, Grand Rapids Parks and Recreation, and the West Michigan Mountain Biking Association to raise money for our Grand Rapids Bike Park revitalization project,” said Stephanie Adams, Executive Director of Friends of Grand Rapids Parks  “This project will add so much opportunity for youth and adults in our community to cycle, bird watch, or just enjoy a walk in the park through the trees."

Public Spaces Community Places is a collaborative effort of the MEDC, the Michigan Municipal League, and Patronicity, in which local residents can use crowdfunding to be part of the development of strategic projects in their communities and be backed with a matching grant from MEDC. Communities, nonprofits and other business entities can apply at

“Great public parks are a key amenity in vibrant communities,” said Dan Gilmartin, CEO and executive director of the Michigan Municipal League. “The planned improvements to the Grand Rapids Bike Park will make it a go-to destination for local and regional cyclists, hikers, and nature enthusiasts.  

The Public Spaces Community Places initiative started in 2014 with MEDC providing matched funding of up to $50,000 for community improvement projects throughout Michigan. As of February 15, 2018, MEDC has provided $4,700,666 in matching grants. Since the launch of the program, 154 projects have been successful in reaching their goal, with $5.6 million raised from 28,416 individual donors.

About Michigan Economic Development Corporation (MEDC)
The Michigan Economic Development Corporation is the state’s marketing arm and lead advocate for business development, job awareness and community development with the focus on growing Michigan’s economy. For more information on the MEDC and our initiatives, visit For Pure Michigan® tourism information, your trip begins at Join the conversation on: FacebookInstagramLinkedIn, and Twitter.

Michigan Municipal League is dedicated to making Michigan’s communities better by thoughtfully innovating programs, energetically connecting ideas and people, actively serving members with resources and services, and passionately inspiring positive change for Michigan’s greatest centers of potential: its communities. The League advocates on behalf of its member communities in Lansing, Washington, D.C., and the courts; provides educational opportunities for elected and appointed municipal officials; and assists municipal leaders in administering services to their communities through League programs and services. Learn more at




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