The Consumers Energy Foundation announced today the top 10 finalists for the Put Your Town on the Map Competition, which will provide $50,000 in grant funding for three projects to help small communities in Michigan grow and thrive.

“The Consumers Energy Foundation has been proud to sponsor this competition since its inception, as every year we’re able to provide funding for placemaking projects that enhance Michigan’s small towns as great places to live,” said Brandon Hofmeister, president of the Consumers Energy Foundation. “With dozens of project entries, selecting only 10 finalists was difficult, but we’re excited to learn more about these projects from the community members most passionate about them.”

Communities with fewer than 10,000 residents had until Feb. 15 to apply. The finalists are:

  • Au Gres (Arenac County) for Kinder Platz Park “old fashion” transformation
  • Bellaire (Antrim County) for a community year-round garden project
  • Coopersville (Ottawa County) for a community outdoor fitness park
  • Dimondale (Eaton County) for a village history art mural
  • Imlay City (Lapeer County) for a public interactive art and audio display
  • Napoleon (Jackson County) for a heritage trail project
  • Rogers City (Presque Isle County) for a public art sculpture
  • Saranac (Ionia County) for a covered community concert pavilion
  • Johns (Clinton County) for community artistic benches
  • White Cloud (Newaygo County) for downtown planter boxes/benches

The finalists, selected by the Consumers Energy Foundation and the Community Economic Development Association of Michigan (CEDAM), will make their pitches at the Small Town and Rural Development Conference, which will take place April 29. The top three winners will receive grants worth $25,000, $15,000 and $10,000, respectively.

We started the competition in 2019. In 2023, grant dollars were awarded to Fennville to install bilingual community wayfinding signs, Reed City for the Crossroads Recreation Connection, and Harbor Beach to expand community gardening.

For more information on the Consumers Energy Foundation, visit

Related blogs:

Pinckney’s Community Garden goes from Grassroots to Full Bloom Thanks to Consumers Energy Foundation Grant

How Big Ideas are Helping Grow Michigan’s Small Towns

Hey, Consumers Energy! Why are you giving away our money to nonprofits?