- people on the move
Brewery Vivant and The Green Well campaign for Cherry Park makeover funds
One Grand Rapids park will receive $50,000 for a makeover at the end of the month.
The city of Grand Rapids is giving the community a say in how park funds will be dispensed this year. Residents can donate their My GR City Points (mygrcitypoints.com), collected through the city’s recycling and volunteer programs, to their favorite park, and at the end of March the park with the most points will receive the makeover dollars. The two runners-up also will receive money — $10,000 each for a spruce-up.
“We have been planning the whole campaign piece of My GR City Points in hopes that different businesses, philanthropists or individuals in the area would jump on board with this idea of doing these community projects and wanting to sponsor them,” said Jasmine Olsen, program coordinator. “The city took the initiative to front the money for this first one to get it out there, what this concept is. The money was money that was going to be spent on parks anyway, but now it’s going to be distributed, essentially, how citizens are saying they want it distributed.”
While Wilcox Park has received the greatest show of support so far, Cherry Park is getting a boost from neighbors The Green Well and Brewery Vivant.
Through March 31 the two restaurants are offering gift cards and buy-one-get-one coupons to patrons and friends that prove they turned their points over to Cherry Park. Gifts are based on the amount of points donated.
Available discounts with proof of My GR City Points donations: a 5,000 point donation will receive a $10 gift card from Brewery Vivant or a buy-one-get-one appetizer from The Green Well; a 7,500 point donation will receive a $25 gift card from Brewery Vivant or a BOGO entree or sandwich from The Green Well, and a 10,000 point donation will receive a $25 gift card from Brewery Vivant and the BOGO entree or sandwich from The Green Well.
“We love being a part of the East Hills neighborhood and Cherry Park is such an important part of our community,” said Kris Spaulding, co-owner of Brewery Vivant. “When we found out about the park makeover program, we personally donated our points to Cherry Park. That got us thinking, what if we could convince others to do the same? This is when it's most fun having a business, when we can do good for our community by using our awesome food and beer as an incentive.”
Currently, Wilcox Park remains in the lead, but Olsen said that Cherry Park is gaining thanks to the additional incentives provided by the two restaurants.
“I just think it is incredibly awesome that they have that much support and want to push that much for improvements in their community,” Olsen said.
Once the prize money is awarded, the city plans to meet with the winning communities to discuss options for the makeover and park spruce-ups.
Olsen hopes that businesses, organizations and individuals will want to get involved as contributors or sponsors for future campaigns and she encourages interested parties to contact her through the mygrcitypoints.com website.
The My GR City Points rewards program was introduced as a way for individuals and businesses to connect. Individuals earn points through recycling and volunteering, which they can then redeem at local businesses for discounts on products and services.