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Acorn Farmers’ Market & Café launches Crowdfunding Campaign to open grocery store
July 22, 2020 @ 8:00 am - September 10, 2020 @ 5:00 pm
Last week Acorn Farmers’ Market & Café launched a campaign to fully open a new local grocery store by the end of 2020. The Public Spaces, Community Places Program through the Michigan Economic Development Corporation (MEDC) is offering a grant to Acorn for $50,000, if a match of $50,000 can be raised through a 60-day crowdfunding campaign on the Patronicity website. This is an all or none grant opportunity. If successful, the renovations and equipment purchase will start in early fall of this year. Acorn Farmers’ Market & Café will respond to the immediate fresh food gap left in Manchester when the only grocery store closed in early 2019. Once completed, Acorn will be open 6 days a week –for a total of 70-90 hours a week, including a café with freshly prepared foods and is modeled off of the highly successful Argus Farm Stop in Ann Arbor and Agricole Farm Stop in Chelsea.
Acorn’s crowdfunding campaign launched on Monday, July 13th and has raised over $10,000 from 74 donors so far. Donation levels range from $25 to $10,000. Each donor will receive a thank you gift based on donation level. Donations can be made online or via check. The campaign will close on September 10th.
Over the past 16 months, since Manchester’s only grocery store closed its doors, Acorn Farmers’ Market & Café’ all-volunteer Board of Directors have made tremendous progress:
· Obtained 501c3 status from the IRS to be a nonprofit, making all donations tax-deductible
· Secured a building lease-to-own agreement in which 80% of rental payments will go towards a purchase price
· Prepared the building for the temporary market that opened in November 2019, three days per week
· Successfully applied for and received $94,000 in grant funds and raised another roughly $30,000 in individual donations
· Completed architectural drawings for renovations with a volunteer professional Architect
· Generated over $55,000 in income for farmers and vendors through the temporary market
· Donated a value of $5,100 to the CRC food pantry and can accept SNAP benefits at the market
What is this capital campaign paying for? The total budget for renovations and equipment is $200,000, half of which has already been raised. These funds will be used to complete the renovation on the exterior and interior of the building to transform the space into a beautiful community grocery store and café including:
· Complete renovation of the interior, flooring, electric and other updates
· Purchase produce cooler, produce tables, display equipment
· Install of a commercial kitchen and equipment
· Install of LED lighting and fixtures
· Purchase of exterior sign
· Installation of 10×10 exterior cooler for produce storage
Acorn has made remarkable progress from conception to the opening of temporary market in a short amount of time. Thousands of volunteer hours and financial donations have been invested in order to get Acorn to this point. We ask you now to consider making a gift this week to help Acorn set down roots and become a renewing resource of fresh and local food, learning opportunities and connection for our community for years to come.
If you have questions or inquiries please contact the Acorn team at: firstname.lastname@example.org
More information about Acorn and the Crowdfunding campaign can be found on the Patronicity site:
If you prefer to give by check please make donations out to:
Acorn Farmers’ Market & Café
P.O. Box 432
Manchester, MI 48158