From Staff Reports

PETOSKEY — Venture North Funding & Development made $64,250 in grants to 16 small businesses in Emmet County.

The grants were part of Venture North’s Regional Resiliency Fund. The 10-county program’s mission is to help businesses with nine or fewer employees impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic.

The grants to Emmet County companies were enabled by a financial contribution from the Petoskey-Harbor Springs Area Community Foundation.

“Small businesses are a vital part of our community, as employers, as providers of goods and services and in their overall role in our local economy,” David (DJ) Jones, Executive Director of the Community Foundation, said in a release. “These small businesses give our community its unique character and serve our community in a variety of ways.

“While we know this funding won’t eliminate the negative impact of the pandemic on their businesses, these grants are intended as a lifeline to help sustain these businesses as they work to adapt to the challenges of COVID-19.”

Emmet County businesses receiving grants of between $2,000 and $5,000 included: Between the Covers, Center City Gym, The Center Salon, Ciarra Claire, Cochon-Gourmet Market & Coffee House, Ernesto’s Cigar Lounge and Bar, Flowers from Sky’s the Limit, Hanni Gallery, Harbor Springs Therapy and Wellness, Julienne Tomatoes, Know Way Out, Magic by Jania, Northern Copy Express, Polish Kitchen, Taylor Rental and Wendy’s Cleaning Services.

Created in May 2020, the Regional Resiliency Program will award more than $500,000 to more than 170 small businesses by the end of the year.

“We hope to bring more resources to Emmet County and our entire region to provide added support for small businesses, the majority of which did not receive help from the first round of federal stimulus funding,” Venture North Executive Director Laura Galbraith said in the release. “If there is new federal stimulus legislation, we will offer our help to businesses in securing those resources as well.”

“This partnership with the Resiliency Program, Venture North and small businesses is a great example of making resources available during these challenging times,” Jones added in the release. “We support and look forward to continuing efforts to bolster the people and organizations of Emmet County as we work through the pandemic together.”

Donations to the Regional Resiliency Fund can be made online at https://www.venturenorthfunding.org/regional-resiliency-program or by contacting Galbraith at (231) 357-6776.

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