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Main Street Mt. Pleasant launches fundraising drive

Residents will have the opportunity to become friends of Main Street

Following the cancellation of various fundraising events, Main Street Mt. Pleasant is looking at new ways to engage the community. (Contributed photo)
Following the cancellation of various fundraising events, Main Street Mt. Pleasant is looking at new ways to engage the community. (Contributed photo)

MT. PLEASANT — Main Street Mt. Pleasant is getting creative with its fundraising and asking local residents to buy in to their downtown.

Like many other organizations, Main Street usually uses the Midwest Old Threshers Reunion as a fundraiser. With the cancellation of the event, Main Street Director Lisa Oetken said the organization is looking at new and inventive ways to make up the loss.

“It brings in thousands, so quite a bit. It’s a good chunk of money … and that is our largest fundraiser that we do,” Oetken said.

The director added that Main Street relies on investors and fundraisers; many, like the Reunion, have been canceled in light of concerns surrounding the coronavirus pandemic.

“We’ve canceled our July concern and postponed the June ones. We’re seeing a lot of fundraisers get canceled, so we’re getting creative and coming up with ways we can raise funds,” she said.

One of those ideas includes the organization’s new campaign, My Town, My Main Street, My Mt. Pleasant.

Main Street is hoping 100 residents will become friends with the organization for $100. Oetken said 10 to 15 people have already pledged to partner with the organization.

“We don’t feel we’ve done a great job of telling our story and telling people they can invest in Main Street,” Oetken said.

The director added she feels it’s important to get buy-in at the local level so people feel they have more ownership over their downtown.

“Once they kind of get their name on it, they’ll hopefully start seeing ‘It is my downtown,’ and it’s something to be proud of,” she said.

Oetken said she hopes to highlight those who participate in the campaign with a sign with pictures of those who partnered as well as highlighting them on social media and across news outlets.

“We want to see more people exposed to what we have to offer downtown. We want people to shop here and shop local,” she said.