Main Street Open 4 Business Competition: 2016

*Local Applications Due to Main Street Mason City by Friday April 8, 2016


Main Street Iowa is excited to offer this program to help encourage business development efforts in Iowa’s Main Street districts around the state! The OPEN 4 BUSINESS competition is a chance for you to support businesses located within your Main Street district. Here’s how it works:

  •   Each local Main Street district can submit one business to represent their program. Local entries are due to Main Street Iowa by  
      4:00 p.m. June 3, 2016.

  •   Business must be physically located within the designated Main Street district.

  •   Business must be a for-profit business.

  •   Business can be a new start-up or an existing business planning an expansion.

  •   Business will be required to complete a paper application and make a 15 minute “pitch” about their business idea to a panel of  
      judges. The business pitch may include a PowerPoint presentation, samples, and props if desired. Be creative and have fun!

  •   Application must be signed by the business owner/applicant, the local executive director, and the local board president.

  •   Businesses must provide a 25% cash match toward the business development efforts outlined in their business pitch. It is  
      important that they have some “skin in the game”.

  •   Sub-state pitches will be held June 13-16, 2016 in Cedar Falls, Charles City, Ottumwa, Osceola or Sac City. Each local program  
      will be assigned a site to attend based on the total number of entries.

  •   Sub-state pitches are closed to the general public. State pitches will be open to the public.

  •   Sub-state winners each receive $8,000 and advance to the state competition.

  •   Sub-state winners will be assigned a business coach to help them prepare for the state contest. State contest pitches will include a
      revised budget to identify how the business would use the $20,000 state award toward their business idea. State winner receives an
      additional $20,000!

  •   Statewide contest pitches will be August 2, 2016 – the evening prior to the State Downtown Conference in Mason City, Iowa.

  •   Any business that competed at the state level in 2015 is NOT eligible to apply.

    The contest is designed to help local Main Street programs provide financial and technical support for business retention, expansion, and recruitment efforts that improve Main Street districts. Those communities that have completed Market Analysis may wish to use this information to help them determine what type of business could fill the gaps/need in their district. Sustainable businesses that will grow and thrive within your district are the desired outcome!