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Application submissions reopen Fall 2020.

The Rethos Main Streets Support Fund is an initiative formed in partnership with local designated Main Street programs to support small businesses located within Main Street districts during the COVID-19 pandemic. Funds ranging from $500 to $1,000 are available for projects that will assist local businesses to operate through or reopen quickly following the COVID-19 pandemic. Projects may be collaborative with other businesses and organizations in your community. 


In the Spring of 2020, Rethos and its partner communities were able to distribute $40,000 to over 50 small businesses through the Rethos Main Streets Support Fund. The injection of funding allowed selected small businesses to focus on projects that enhanced their operations during pandemic closures or allowed them to have a more robust re-opening. 


In response to the escalating toll that the COVID-19 pandemic has taken and will continue to take on Rethos Main Street districts throughout Minnesota, Rethos is announcing a Fall renewal of the Rethos Main Streets Support Fund for small businesses located in designated Rethos Main Streets Minnesota communities. 

Eligible Projects: Marketing, customer and community engagement and relations, unique business specific reopening events, operational upgrades (including technology, online stores, etc.), physical space updates (signs, displays, paint/construction supplies), your time to complete the project. 


Ineligible Expenses: Rent, mortgage payments, utility expenses, inventory costs, or other similar expenses that occur in the ordinary course of business. These funds are not for personal expenses (groceries, healthcare, etc.).  


Deadline: Applications will reopen in Fall 2020.  


Criteria for Applicants: 


  • Have fewer than 20 employees (combination of part and full time) 

  • Must be a brick and mortar business (but may be 501c3) 

  • Business may rent or own space 

  • Demonstrate sustainability: how will the funds keep the business running during emergency time and include plans for reopening  

  • Must be located within a designated Main Street district and have an existing relationship with the local Main Street Program 

  • Specified plan for funds with budget information 

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