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Current Bureau Community Grant Recipients

2018 Bureau Community Grant Recipients

The Ames Convention & Visitors Bureau awarded $92,000 in funding on behalf of their Community Grant Program to assist local businesses and organizations in promoting and implementing 31 special events and programs in the Ames area for 2018. Each grant was awarded according to its intent to attract new visitors to the Ames area, enhance visitor experiences and improve the quality of life for area residents. With this latest addition of grant recipients, the Bureau’s Community Grant Program has awarded more than $630,000 to help fund nearly 254 events and projects throughout the area since its establishment in 2007.

Days of Service – Multiple dates throughout year

Sponsoring Organization: Volunteer Center of Story County. The VCSC facilitates Days of Service to introduce and connect community members and visitors to causes and organizations through service to identify and address local needs. The service projects are either planned by a collaborative effort of local agencies or the completed projects benefit local agencies and groups. All Days of Service and Events are open to volunteers of all ages to participate and relate to a variety of causes.

Fly With Banning Exhibit – February

Sponsoring Organization: Ames Historical Society. The Fly With Banning traveling exhibition features James Herman Banning. Banning was the first African-American to fly across the Continental United States and also to receive a U.S. Dept. of Commerce pilot’s license. Banning learned to fly while living in Ames and attending Iowa State College.

ISU Block & Bridle Livestock Shows – February and March

Sponsoring Organization: Iowa State Block & Bridle Club. The Cyclone Classic is a market beef and breeding beef cattle show that is open to the public. The Cyclone Classic is the second largest jackpot cattle show in Iowa and has doubled in size in the last 3 years. The Spring Market Hog Show is a competitive youth market swine show. This show brings together youth across Iowa and surrounding states.

Reggie’s Sleepout Ames – March 24

Sponsoring Organization: Youth and Shelter Services, Inc. Participants will sleep overnight at Jack Trice Stadium with planned activities throughout the night, including music, games and contests. Participation is free, but campers are encouraged to raise funds. Funds go helping homeless youth in the community.

North Grand Farmers’ Market – April – December

Sponsoring Organization: North Grand Mall. The North Grand Farmers’ Market was established in 2005 to provide our local and surrounding communities with farm fresh locally raised, seasonal, garden-fresh vegetables, fruits, flowers, and herbs, plus local honey, jam and popcorn, as well as homemade baked goods, handcrafted items including home decor, rugs, and other crafts. The market provides opportunities for local producers and artisans to join together to showcase their goods to the local and surrounding communities.

Animal Learning Day – April 7

Sponsoring Organization: Iowa State Block & Bridle Club. The objective of this event is to allow industry leaders and ISU Block & Bridle members to share the story of animal agriculture to the public. This event is a non-profit, educational event with the goal of bringing in fellow students, faculty, and community members to inform them on modern day animal agriculture facts and practices. There will be a variety of hands-on activities and informational booths educating about the various aspects of agriculture.

Pride Block Party – April 13

Sponsoring Organization: Gamma Rho Lambda – Omicron Chapter. Pride Block Party will be an all-inclusive welcoming event for the city of Ames. This event will feat ure music, a live DJ, a cocktail bar, and a photo booth. The event is mainly a social gathering for t he Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender, Asexual (LGBTQIA+) and ally community.

Bell Casting – April 18

Sponsoring Organization: Iowa State Department of Music & Theatre. The contractor of the 27-bell carillon, Meeks, Watson & Company from Georgetown, Ohio, will cast one bell on Iowa State Campus in April 2018. The event will begin with a short carillon concert on central campus. Event attendees may enjoy the music outdoor or in the Martha-Ellen Tye Recital Hall in the Music Building.

Kids Run For Kids – April 28

Sponsoring Organization: The Rotary Club of Ames Morning. Kids Run for Kids (KRK) is a Fun-Filled Family Event that was created in 2015 to raise funds for philanthropic grants that benefit children locally/world-wide and to increase physical fitness among children. It is held annually on the last Saturday of April. KRK is aimed at children between the ages of 12 days old through 12 years old. It includes runs (not races) of 1 K, 2K, 3K, and 4K.

Ames Main Street Farmers’ Market – May – October

Sponsoring Organization: Ames Chamber of Commerce. The Market showcases locally produced fruits and vegetables, cheese, meat, honey, eggs, fresh cut flowers, bedding plants, perennials, jams and jellies, baked goods along with other handmade products crafted by local artisans. We recruit and encourage other high-quality prepared food vendors. The Market works hard to augment the use of live music, cooking contests and children’s activities to make the Market increasingly diverse and more enjoyable for the customers.

Virtuosic Panorama – May 5

Sponsoring Organization: Central Iowa Symphony. A celebration of dazzling skill in many forms, the Central Iowa Symphony’s May 2018 concert, entitled “Virtuosic Panorama,” features piano virtuoso Mei-Hsuan Huang performing Beethoven’s tour de force Emperor Concerto. Music from Weinberger’s opera about a remarkable
bagpiper–Polka and Fugue from Schwanda the Bagpiper–is paired with Franz Liszt’s glorious Les Preludes, bringing the 2017-18 season to a triumphant conclusion.

Special Olympics Summer Games – May 17 – 19

Sponsoring Organization: Special Olympics Iowa. The Special Olympics Iowa Summer Games are held each year at Iowa State University in Ames. The event brings together more than 5,000 athletes, coaches, volunteers and spectators from across the state. This year we anticipate a record number of attendees as we are celebrating 50 years of Special Olympics.

Pop-Up Exhibition – Summer 2018

Sponsoring Organization: Iowa State College of Design. ISU Design on Main will participate in the 2018 ArtWalk in downtown Ames by hosting a pop-up art show exhibiting the work of local and regional artists. The opening reception for this exhibition will take place during ArtWalk. The exhibition will be an inclusive, all media exhibition geared to hosting as many participating artists as possible.

Summerfest in Campustown – June 2

Sponsoring Organization: Campustown Action Association. Summerfest in Campustown serves as an open house to showcase all the district has to offer. Member businesses/organizations host family-friendly activities and are able to promote themselves at the same time. In addition to the the member activities, we have expanded the “Featured Activities” to include face painting, balloons, air brush tattoos, portraits, root beer garden and a petting zoo. These are provided to the public free of charge.

Beauty & the Beast, Jr. – June 15 – 24

Sponsoring Organization: Story Theater Company. Story Theater Company (STC), a non-profit children’s theater located in Ames, will produce “Disney’s Beauty and the Beast Jr” as part of its 2017-18 season. The beloved musical will receive seven performances at Ames City Auditorium from June 15-24, 2018. Each year STC produces a musical, and “Disney’s Beauty and the Beast Jr” will be Its most ambitious to date.

Hope Run for Hospice – June 16

Sponsoring Organization: Mary Greeley Medical Center Foundation. The Mary Greeley Hope Run Is a benefit run for the hospital’s hospice programs entering its 18th year. The event is held every June and welcomes people from all over Iowa and surrounding states. Many of the attendees are families who come to celebrate and honor their loved ones who have benefitted from the hospice programs at Mary Greeley. We offer a 5k timed race, 1 mile fun walk/run and a junior run for those age10 and under.

ACTORS Season Announcement Reception – June 18

Sponsoring Organization: Ames Community Theater. Before the opening night performance, we host a reception to celebrate the opening of the show. We invite the audience members to come 45 minutes early for hors d’oeuvres or cakes that are provided by one of the local restaurants or bakeries.

ACTORS Series Finale – June 18

Sponsoring Organization: Ames Community Theater.  At the performance of our final show, we sell Early Bird season tickets to our Season 63.

Pollinator Fest – June 23

Sponsoring Organization: Reiman Gardens. Pollinator Fest is an event intended to teach the public about the importance of different insects in the pollination process along with providing tips and tricks on how to cater to those insects that are so vital to our rich plant life in Central Iowa.

Ames Fireworks – July 3

Sponsoring Organization: Young Professional of Ames. The 2018 Ames Fireworks will take place on July 3rd in the Iowa State University parking lots G6-G8. Spectators may view the display from the parking lots surrounding Jack Trice Stadium and the Iowa State Center.

Independence Day Celebration – July 3

Sponsoring Organization: Reiman Gardens. Every year during the Ames Independence Day Celebration, Reiman Gardens likes to open their doors to the public to picnic, enjoy music and experience the Gardens before finding a spot on the lawn in which to watch the fireworks display. This event has been wonderfully received by the public with people of all ages and backgrounds coming to enjoy the festivities.

Friendship Ark’s Annual 5K on the 4th – July 4

Sponsoring Organization: Friendship Ark. Friendship Ark Homes and Community services hold 5k race at Ada Hayden on July 4th each year. Approximately 200 runners and walkers participate and this event is looked upon as the way to start the holiday off right. Participants enjoy the exercise, fresh air, wildlife, great views at the lake, and celebrate the unique blessings for all of us that come from supporting people with intellectual disabilities.

Amazing Grace Lemonade Race – July 18

Grace, who is 12 years old, has been raising money for Blank Children’s Hospital in Des Moines, Iowa. She started by selling lemonade and hot chocolate  and she has had toy drives for the past 2 years. Last year, they has a successful Amazing Grace Lemonade Race and are continuing the tradition this year.

Iowa Games Athlete Jamboree – July 20

Sponsoring Organization: Iowa Sports Foundation. Each year the Iowa Games kicks off the main weekend of the Games with the Athlete Jamboree and Opening Ceremony. The Athlete Jamboree is a family-oriented event, designed to bring together athletes, their families, coaches, fans, volunteers, officials and community members. The Athlete Jamboree is free for everyone and is open to the general public.

KHOI Annual Street Celebration – August 11

Sponsoring Organization: KHOI Community Radio. Since its inception, KHOI has held annual mid-August anniversary party to celebrate its founding. This street concert was produced and promoted for a focused experience of active cultural appreciation, which made this a unique signature event, that attracted a new and diverse crowd of concert goers to downtown Ames.

Senior Variety Show – August 17 & 18

Sponsoring Organization: Senior Variety Show. The Senior Variety Show is a creative, community tradition with many-purposeful outcomes. Along with encouraging senior talents in the performing arts, it inspires the community with the joy of aging; and through that, provides an uplifting and enjoyable afternoon/evening of entertainment.

Hometown Teams Exhibit  – September – November

Sponsoring Organization: The Octagon Center for the Arts and Main Street Cultural District. The Smithsonian’s Hometown Teams traveling exhibition examines the many roles that sports play in American society. Hometown sports are more than just games-they shape our lives and unite us and celebrate who we are as Americans. if we’re not playing sports, we are watching them.

Hometown Teams Exhibit Talks – September – November

Sponsoring Organization: Ames Historical Society. The Smithsonian’s Hometown Teams traveling exhibition examines the many roles that sports play in American society. Hometown sports are more than just games-they shape our lives and unite us and celebrate who we are as Americans. if we’re not playing sports, we are watching them. Three history talks related to the exhibit will be presented.

50th Anniversary Performing Arts Kickoff Event – September 18

Sponsoring Organization: Iowa State Center. The Iowa State Center will celebrate the 50th anniversary of the Performing Arts Series at Stephens Auditorium during the 2018-2019 season. In September 2018, Stephens Auditorium will host the kickoff event for a year-long 50th anniversary celebration. The event will showcase 50 years of performing arts events at Stephens Auditorium. There will be highlights from past Broadway shows, popular artists and attractions, emerging artists and chronology of orchestras hosted by the Ames International Orchestra Festival.

Octagon Art Festival – September 23

Sponsoring Organization: The Octagon Center for the Arts. The Octagon will celebrate its 48th annual Octagon Art Festival on September 23, 2018. The art festival is one of Iowa’s longest running annual festival that celebrates a wide variety of arts. This festival also promotes the cultural and artistic diversity thriving in the Ames area. This one-day event brings around 14,000 people to downtown Ames and is the largest event held in the Main Street Cultural District. This event is free for the public to attend and includes many activities for the family to enjoy together.

Iowa Sporting Goods Design – September 26

Sponsoring Organization: Iowa State College of Design. This exhibition will showcase Iowa’s unique history of sporting goods design at Iowa State University. A variety of work will be exhibited, including products currently in the marketplace designed by ISU Industrial Design students sponsored studios including: Cutter’s Football Gloves, Shock Doctor sports medical products, McDavid protective and compression apparel, Zebco Fishing Reels, and Nathan Running, wellness, hydration backpacks, and water bottles.

Smithsonian Institute Traveling Exhibit – September 29

Sponsoring Organization: Main Street Cultural District. The exhibit, which is part of the Museums on Main Street program, examines the many roles sports plays in local communities and how sports has helped to shape America.

2018 Ames Area Studio Tour – October 6 – 7

Sponsoring Organization: Ames Community Arts Council. During the Ames Area Studio Tour, participating studios will open their doors and invite the public to take a behind-the-scenes look at the creative process. In this free self-guided tour, people can expect to see demonstrations and interactive displays, to see the tools of the trade, and to talk with the artists. There will also be opportunities to purchase artwork.

Run for the Roses – October 7

Sponsoring Organization: Alpha Omicron Pi Sorority and the Ames Area Running Club. This is a SK run/walk, a 1 OK road race, and a kids run that starts and finishes at the Ames Middle School. The run is followed by a breakfast and awards ceremony. The breakfast consists of made to order omelets, baked goods, fresh fruit, and an assortment of beverages.