Daily News

First Round of Grants Announced for Amherst Businesses

AMHERST — The Downtown Amherst Foundation’s grant review committee has selected the successful applicants from the first grant-giving cycle with businesses representative of several sectors, including restaurants and cafés, bars and pubs, retail establishments, and services. Nearly $150,000 was awarded to businesses in amounts up to $10,000.

Recipients included Amherst Coffee, Bistro 63, Crazy Noodles, Cushman Market, El Comalito, Fresh Side, La Veracruzana, LimeRed Teahouse, Miss Saigon, McMurphy’s Uptown Tavern, the Moan and Dove, Pita Pockets, Sibie’s, and Stackers for restaurants and bars; Amherst Books, Fretted Instrument, J. Austin Jewelers, M&M Links, the Bower Studio, the Toy Box, and Zanna for retailers; Cheryl Nina Salon, Matt’s Barbershop, Sei Bella Salon, Styles by Deborah, and the Lift Salon for salon/barbershop services; and Amherst Fitness, Amherst Inn, Center Dance Studio, Collective Copies/Levellers Press, Hope & Feathers Framing, the Laundry Club, and the Yoga Center Amherst for other services.

Contributions to the fund include donations from Amherst Insurance Agency, bankESB, Bueno y Sano, C&H Architects, Encharter Insurance, Felicity Hardee Law Practice, First Church Amherst, Greenfield Northampton Cooperative Bank, Howard E. Stark Charitable Foundation, Mom’s House Chinese Food Market, PeoplesBank, Stakeholders Capital, UMassFive College Credit Union, and the Amherst Business Improvement District. Donors helped the foundation reach half its $500,000 goal in only three weeks.

The Downtown Amherst Foundation anticipates another round of grants and plans on a more concrete announcement in coming weeks regarding this second round. That announcement will include information on eligibility, as well as timing and size offered in this grant cycle. With the Commonwealth’s announcement of a phased reopening strategy on May 18, these grants will be focused on helping businesses get up and running. Anyone who has an interest in maintaining a vibrant Amherst environment and business culture is invited to contribute to the fund at www.downtownamherstfoundation.org.