Skip to Main Content

 View All News

Twelve applicants receive 2022 Start-Up Event Grant funds

Media Contact: Katie Adelman
Rochester Downtown Alliance
Office: 507-216-9886



Twelve applicants receive 2022 Start-Up Event Grant funds

ROCHESTER, Minn.—From an impressive number of applicants, 12 recipients will receive funding from the Rochester Downtown Alliance’s Start-Up Event Grant to host programs in downtown Rochester.

Receiving Start-Up Event Grant funds are the following organizations and individuals:

  • $3,000: ICAM Utsav Color Run and Food Mela by Indian Cultural Association of Minnesota
    • This this is a fun event that incorporates the Indian festival Holi (Festival of Colors) and typical summer fun activities (food, music, 5K run). ICAM hopes to provide opportunity for the Rochester community to learn about the Festival of Colors as well as be a part of the energetic outdoor activities.
  • $3,000: Butterfly Festival by Listos Preschool and Childcare
    • The family-friendly event will be themed around Monarch butterflies and beautiful connection between Minnesota and Mexico, with the butterflies’ migration touching both places. The event would feature cultural displays and performances about the monarch's roots in Mexican culture and the Day of the Dead. There will also be children’s activities and art and food vendors.
  • $3,000: The Night market by Tiffany Alexandria
    • The Night Market was a hit in 2021, and this year, the event organizer will attempt to create an even more authentic experience. The Night Market is not just a community gathering event; it is also an incubator to support small and first-time BIPOC businesses. By creating a series of smaller events before the last big event, organizers hope to encourage and help first-time business owners and event vendors have more opportunities to learn whether the products they're selling are viable for the community.
  • $2,900: Heart of Our City Exhibit by Lisa Higgs
    • An exhibition at Threshold Arts and Art Walk locations throughout the downtown special service district to encourage exploration of the area.
  • $2,500: Ethiopian Heritage Day by the Ethiopian Community of Rochester
    • The main goal is to showcase our culture, to create a welcoming environment, and to connect with the community at large. Activities include hair braiding, dress up, coloring, dance, serving meals in custom Gursha (friendly meal sharing practice in Ethiopia), an Ethiopian coffee ceremony, music, and dance performance.
  • $2,375: Kidical Mass Family Bike Ride by We Bike Rochester
    • The event is a large group bicycle ride that focuses on a safe and fun event for all ages and abilities to enjoy biking in Rochester. If you’ve ever wanted to join a bike parade and ride self-paced, car-free loops around the river downtown, this is your chance!
  • $2,000: Med City Art Festival by Ivete Martinez
    • Med City Art Festival is a free festival for the public with a mission is to expose and educate our attendees with a wide range of artistic experiences that engage, excite, and inspire them.
  • $1,100: Mixed Precipitation Pickup Truck Opera by the Rochester Art Center
    • A full operetta performance (about 90 minutes) performed in the back of a pickup truck. Mixed Precipitation brings a vibrant energy wherever they perform. Humor and wit, blended with the age-old sagas make their performances fun, approachable and uplifting.
  • $625: Burlesque on Broadway by Out Rochester
    • Burlesque on Broadway invites guests to enjoy a burlesque performance by Burly Bluffs, sip on hand-crafted cocktails, and support both an underrepresented artform and community of people at this 18+ event.
  • $500: Murder Mystery Party by the Rochester Public Library
    • There has been a murder at the library. Participants will be invited to visit the library after hours and explore the library while solving a fun murder mystery. They will come across puzzles and clues they can use to solve the mystery. Everyone who solves the mystery will get a small prize, with larger prizes available for fastest group and best costumes.
  • $500: That 70’s Halloween Celebration by LTN Music
    • This celebration will be hosted by local band The Soul Train. Participants are asked to dress in 70's costumes. There will be dancing, appetizers for general admission, and seated dinner for VIP ticket holders.
  • $500: Songwriters in the Round at Treedome by Patrick Egan
    • The event will have two sets of music, where three artists will share songs and tell stories behind them in what is called a round, sometimes called a Nashville Round, with each artist taking turns playing a song in rotation.

“The increased number of grant submissions demonstrates that downtown is establishing itself as one of the most desirable event settings in the region” said Holly Masek, RDA executive director. “Downtown Rochester features a variety of parks, plazas, and indoor venues to choose from and is home to many creative businesses that can assist in production. And with more than 100 shops and restaurants within walking distance, event attendees can easily park once and make a day of it.”

Additional funding from Destination Medical Center was made available to expand the program and support a larger number of events in 2022.

Submitted Start-Up Event Grant applications were reviewed by RDA staff and juried by the RDA’s Activities, Culture, and Engagement Committee for considerations including mission alignment, weekend priority, uniqueness of event, and engagement of underrepresented communities.

Watch for the 2022 Start-Up Event Grant recipients’ programs to be submitted on the downtown Rochester events calendar.

About the Rochester Downtown Alliance
The Rochester Downtown Alliance is a nonprofit corporation comprised of a broad range of people representing property owners, business leaders, the city and others with a direct stake in enhanced business and economic development conditions in the downtown district. We work together to build a vibrant downtown community. We believe a strong core positively impacts the greater city of Rochester. Through a series of special events, activities, and initiatives, we create energy, excitement, and a unique character to Downtown Rochester, Minnesota.