Main Street Newsletter - August

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Main Street Monthly

A monthly publication from the Office of Community and Rural Affairs

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DDW 2019

OCRA wants to highlight your DDW & October events!

We are starting the countdown to our favorite week of the year- Downtown Development Week! And as a part of our celebration, we want to celebrate alongside you and help promote all of your planned events, Whether these activities are taking place special for DDW or not, we want it to be a special time for all Hoosiers to visit their downtowns and commercial cores. It’s not too late to plan an event if you haven’t already!

Click this link and complete the form for each planned event. If you know of other organizations holding events during that time, please pass the link to them, as well. 

OCRA will compile all of the events into an interactive map, and promote them daily through social media. The map will be located on our DDW website and available once we start receiving events.

Meet OCRA's new Indiana Main Street program manager


As you all may recall, Mary Shaw has officially retired.  We are excited to announce Jackie Swihart is taking over the Indiana Main Street and Historic Renovation Grant programs. Most recently, Jackie was an intern with the Indiana Humanities and completed her Master's in Public History. You can reach her at with any questions.

Funding available to connect creativity, community and history

The Arts in the Parks and Historic Sites grant opportunity is a great chance for you to reach a new audience and reconnect with your own creativity in Indiana's most peaceful settings. To get funded, the proposed project must be connected to the participating site and provide a high quality experience for visitors. This grant is available to individual artists, nonprofit organizations, and municipalities. 

2019 application deadlines:

Seminar to help governmental units protect against fraud


The Indiana Bond Bank will host a free educational seminar to help units of government protect themselves from fraud.

The Government Fraud Awareness Seminar is scheduled from 2 to 3:30 p.m. on Tuesday, Sept. 17 in the Regions Tower in downtown Indianapolis. It features an array of speakers and experts including Indiana Treasurer Kelly Mitchell, IBB executive director Mark Wuellner, and Regions corporate security member Neil M. Taylor and payments fraud product manager Randy C. Wilborn.

With the increasing trend of fraudulent attempts to gain access to large and small governmental units’ databases, bank accounts, employee information, etc., the program can help local units of government better protect themselves from internal and external fraud.

Registration is now open, but is limited to one guest per state of Indiana agency. Guests are asked to RSVP by Sept. 5 to

Important Dates

Thursday, Sept. 12 − Peer Communities announced

Tuesday, Sept. 24 − IMPA/OCRA Conference

View our full calendar.

Mark your calendars for the upcoming Main Street Community Exchange, which will be held Friday, Oct. 11 in the City of Crawfordsville. Registration information will be available soon!

Attend this year's IMPA/OCRA conference

Free registration is now open for the 2019 IMPA/OCRA Conference titled Elevate Community Development. Join the Office of Community and Rural Affairs and the Indiana Municipal Power Agency (IMPA) as we examine ways to elevate change in your downtown community. On Tuesday, Sept. 24 learn about how Indiana communities are using innovative ideas in the areas of wellness, child care, tourism and quality of place to take their community to the next level. Space is limited so register today!

Register now

Rewriting the rural narrative

Join Independent Colleges of Indiana, Indiana Humanities and Indiana Philanthropy Alliance for a half-day interactive workshop called “Rewriting the Rural Narrative.” The events, which will be held at Manchester University on Oct. 9 and Hanover College on Oct. 10, will bring together community, business and academic leaders to learn about successful economic, government and arts and culture strategies that apply specifically to rural communities.

Apply for a Destination Development Grant

Applications are now being accepted for Indiana Tourism’s Destination Development Grant Program. Grant requests between $50,000 and $250,000 will be considered through this competitive application process. Entities that have previously received a Destination Development Grant may not apply for additional Destination Development funds for a two-year period from the date of their last award.

The deadline for applications is December 6, 2019 by 4 p.m. ET. Finalists will be announced on February 7, 2020.

Destination Development Grant program timeline, guidelines and application can be found here.

Be a part of a national network of Main Streets. Visit or call 312-619-5611 to join Main Street America.