Economic Development, Nonprofits, and Small Business & Startups

Nonprofit names winners of Neighborhood Business Awards

November 2, 2018
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Third Coast Development names partner
Max Benedict. Courtesy Third Coast Development

A Grand Rapids nonprofit has honored several local companies for their work in renewing the city’s business districts.

The Neighborhood Business Alliance, or NBA, hosted its 29th-annual Neighborhood Business Awards last night at Wealthy Theatre in Grand Rapids to honor the “best” neighborhood businesses.

Each year, the awards program celebrates “new businesses, notable neighborhood economic development successes and the investment and commitment in 20 neighborhood business districts in Grand Rapids,” according to the NBA.

“This long-standing celebration is the only event in the city that continually recognizes the hard work and dedication of our neighborhood business owners and other community stakeholders,” said Tim Syzmanski, president, NBA. “We are proud to recognize the nearly 100 nominees who continually work to invest in their businesses and our city’s neighborhoods.”

Winners are chosen by an awards selection committee from a list of peer nominations.

The awards were presented by Mayor Rosalynn Bliss.

Grand Rapids Commissioner Ruth Kelly and City Manager Mark Washington joined Bliss on stage to congratulate the nominees and winners.

The free event included a Taste of Our Neighborhoods reception before the awards show, featuring samples from Roam by San Chez Bistro, Furniture City Creamery, Main Street BBQ Express, Kingma’s Market Plainfield, El Granjero Mexican Grill and Big E’s Sports Grill.

Neighborhood Business Alliance

The NBA is an information and advocacy organization made up of representatives from all 20 neighborhood associations in the city.

The nonprofit meets quarterly to share best practices on issues affecting neighborhood businesses and districts.

Neighborhood Business Award winners

Best Business Exterior: Eklectico Greek Kouzina

Best Exterior Renovation: Eastown Veterinary Clinic

Best Interior Renovation: 616 Realty

Best Long-standing Business: The Shade Shop

Best Neighborhood Restaurant: Forty Acres Soul Kitchen

Best New Construction: Diamond Place

Best Re-use of a Building: Zoko 822

Outstanding New Business: Wax Poetic Candle Bar

Good Neighbor Award: Smitty’s Specialty Beverage

Best Business Promotion: Grand Rapids Garage Bar & Grill and SpeakEZ Lounge for the 2018 World Cup Party

Best Business District Promotion: Best of Creston

John H. Logie Neighborhood Business Champion Award: Victoria Upton, posthumously

Gerald R. Helmholdt Grand Award: West Michigan Hispanic Chamber of Commerce

P. Michael Wanroy Volunteer in Business Award: Max Benedict, Third Coast Development

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