Tuesday, March 28, 2017

Open Space park funding is a top city budget priority

From the Petoskey News-Review: Developing a city budget is always a complex task, but this year Boyne City officials must also decide how they will come up with about $1.6 million to buy property for a waterfront park. City staff and the city commission recently began hammering out details of the annual budget and finding the money to purchase the property at 475 North Lake St. - currently known as the Open Space park is at the top of the to-do list. In December, the Michigan Department of Natural Resources Trust Fund Board approved a grant of up to $2.4 million to help pay for the purchase of the property. City manager Michael Cain has estimated that the "worst case scenario for what the city would need to raise to pay for its share of the purchase is about $1.6 million to $1.7 million." Full story.

Thursday, March 2, 2017

"Big step forward for downtown:" Catt buys Sportsman

Glen Catt of Catt Development Company came to Tuesday's Boyne City Commission meeting and announced that he has purchased the Sportsman and the adjacent former Little Lena's restaurant. Catt told the commission that he expects to do some building clean-up and planning this year, but major changes and occupancy probably won't take place until 2018. City Manager Michael Cain introduced Catt, saying: "Downtown Boyne City took another big step forward when Catt Development purchased the buildings at 116 and 118 South Lake Street.... The two-story building was built in the early 1900's and one of its early occupants was the Princess Theater.  Although I've heard many stories about the thriving businesses that were there not that long ago, they have struggled in recent years, and the buildings show it. We have seen time and again what Glen Catt and Catt Development, working with the Boyne community, have been able to do for our community. The results have been amazing - Café Santé, My Community Dental Centers, Alpine Chocolate Haus, Kidd & Leavy Real Estate, seven waterfront cottages, 7 Monks Taproom, Northern Michigan Sports Medicine and Bliss Salon, which is scheduled to open on Front Street this spring. And apparently he's not done yet. Their continued investment in and working with Boyne City is a major part of our ongoing resurgence." News-Review story.

Main Street Façade Grant applications now available

Northern Homes Community Development Corporation received a façade grant last year to assist with improvements at The White House, 417 Boyne Avenue. Pictured from left to right: Barb Lane-Harrington and Jane MacKenzie, Northern Homes staff; and Kelsie King-Duff, Boyne City Main Street Executive Director.
Applications for Boyne City Main Street’s 2017 façade grant program are now available. The façade grant program provides matching funds for Main Street District property owners and tenants to improve the facades of their buildings, in order to maintain the architectural character and economic viability of downtown.
To begin the process, interested property owners or tenants must meet with the Boyne City Main Street Executive Director and Design Committee Chair to discuss the scope of the project. An application must then be submitted by April 27, 2017. After a competitive review process by the Design Committee and Boyne City Main Street Board a decision will be made to which projects receive funding. For every dollar awarded the applicant must spend an equal amount. Individual grant amounts will be up to 50 percent of a project’s cost. A total of $15,000 is available for the 2017-18 cycle.
“The continued support of this program stands as a great example of Boyne City Main Street’s commitment to our community,” Michelle Cortright, Boyne City Main Street chair said.
Funds are provided by the Boyne City Main Street Program with dollars raised through Boyne Thunder. There is no set minimum or maximum number of projects per year. Eligible items under the façade program include, but may not be limited to: removal of siding that was used to cover original building materials, exterior brick or wall surface repair, pointing of brick/mortar joint repair, window and/or door replacement/repair, any architectural details in need of repair and/or replacement.
“The Design Committee looks forward to reviewing the applications for what is always an array of exciting projects and developments for our downtown,” Kelsie King-Duff, Boyne City Main Street Executive Director said.
The grant program seeks to encourage private investment through the rehabilitation and improvement of facades within the Boyne City Main Street District, to encourage good design that will serve as quality examples, and to preserve the architectural character that is distinctive to Boyne City. By improving the appearance of the building facades, the program aims to improve the economic viability of the downtown.
For more information about Boyne City Main Street and the façade grant program, visit www.boynecitymainstreet.com or email mainstreet@boynecity.com.

Wednesday, March 1, 2017

40 years afloat: Wooden boat maker reaching milestone

Steve and Ben Van Dam
From the Petoskey News-Review: Through four decades of building wooden watercraft, Van Dam Custom Boats has put priority on continuous improvement in how it approaches projects. As the Boyne City-based company prepares to mark its 40th anniversary this year, founder Steve Van Dam sees that desire for quality as a key factor in the operation's longevity. "We really embrace that, trying to make everything better," Van Dam said. Through the years, Van Dam Custom Boats has pursued projects as large as a 55-foot sailboat, and as distinctive as a wooden 33-foot speedboat capable of traveling 100 mph. The company has tackled projects for a U.S. customer base extending from coast to coast, as well as one international order. Full story.