Amidst the ongoing uncertainty and pain caused by COVID-19, eight small businesses in Downtown Northfield will soon receive a boost to their operations. Thanks to a new program through Rethos Main Streets, the Northfield Downtown Development Corporation (NDDC) and other designated Main Street organizations across the state were each allocated $4,000 to help businesses adapt to the new economic environment.
“We are grateful to Rethos for creating this program to support our local business community in such trying times,” said Greg Siems, NDDC Executive Director. “The NDDC and Northfield in general are fortunate to be a designated Main Street community and to have access to these resources that we wouldn’t otherwise.”
Businesses were invited to apply to support projects that would assist them in operating through or reopening following the COVID-19 pandemic. Out of seventeen applications from Northfield, eight projects were ultimately selected to receive $500 each:
- By All Means Graphics—for a digital marketing campaign to promote an online ordering system
- The Entertainment Guide—for marketing to promote local events and happenings
- Groundwire / Little Joy Coffee—for website updates to support direct-to-consumer sales
- Heartwork Yoga Studio—for high-quality wireless headphones for instructors to improve the online class experience
- The Measuring Cup—for website updates to allow for online shopping
- Minnesota Soulstice—for improvements and maintenance of an online store
- Northfield Area Chamber of Commerce—for sidewalk signs to promote foot traffic when MN’s stay-at-home order is lifted.
- The Rare Pair—for creation and maintenance of an e-commerce site
“All of these businesses are thinking creatively about how to adapt their business models and we are proud to support them in this way,” said Kathleen Holmes, NDDC Board President. “At the same time, there is clearly a much greater need out there and we encourage all Northfielders to continue supporting local businesses via online ordering, curbside pickup, home delivery, gift card purchases, and all other available methods. These Rethos funds will help, but businesses ultimately need revenue to survive.”
“As this public health and economic crisis evolves,” Siems added, “the NDDC will continue to research and explore additional grant and fundraising opportunities to support our downtown community.”