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Madison Street Festival grant recipients gather for presentation of grants at Monday's city council meeting.

The celebration continues: Madison Street Festival awards grants to 16 Madison educational programs

By Maria Rakoczy

MADISON – Madison Street Festival President Crystal McBrayer along with the festival’s grant manager, Keegan Mumaw, presented the 2022 grant recipients at Monday’s Madison City Council meeting. The Madison Street Festival is a 501 c3 non-profit organization driven to benefit Madison students by supporting phenomenal educational programs. Last year’s festival was a special one. After a two-year break, Madison Street Festival came back strong with three additional missions the organizers were determined to achieve.

“The Madison Street Festival organization walked into 2022 after being away for two years with a three part mission: secure enough sponsorships, vendors, and donors to fund the festival; second, manager our budget in a climate of rising costs and still create a fun, magical day for our community, and third, give as many grants as possible to finish our fortieth festival celebration to accomplish our mission as 501 c3 non-profit. Madison Street Festival’s mission is ultimately to support students of all ages by providing access to education and educational programs,” McBrayer explained.

The organization received a large number of a grant applications from over thirty different programs last year. Madison Street Festival was able to award grants to sixteen of those applicants.

The lucky sixteen programs include the following:

-American Legion post 229 Foundation

-Bob Jones High School Teaching Academy – Reading Buddies

-Columbia Elementary School “3D Art”

-Columbia Elementary “Shopping for Success”, a program that awards students fake currency for good behavior and work, and classroom jobs

-Columbia Elementary “Astros”, a program that supports STEM groups

-Discovery Middle School’s “Panther Racing”, a competitive greenpower car racing club

-Heritage Elementary School’s “Finch Robots”

-Heritage Elementary School’s – “Hands-on Literacy Learning w/VersaTiles”

-James Clemens High School’s “Photography”

-James Clemens Special Education Program – “Brain Gym”

-Madison City School’s “Robotics team”

-Madison Elementary School’s STEM club

-Midtown Elementary School’s “Music Program”

-Midtown Elementary School’s “Archery team”

-Rainbow Elementary School Resource Classroom – “Sensory items”

-Danny Kendall Johnson Foundation to support students preparing for the ACT and professional interviews

The grants will go toward purchasing supplies for the various programs, such as, cameras for the photography program, robots, batteries, and coding rights for robotics and STEM organizations, bows, arrows, and targets for the archery team, and a recumbent exercise bike for James Clemens High School’s Brain Gym. The grants will also support the first robotics competition of 2023 for the Madison City School’s Robotics Team and scholarships for the American Legion 2023 Boys and Girls State.

“Grant recipients, on behalf of the entire Madison Street Festival organization, all the sponsors, vendors, and donors that made our 2022 festival possible, including our city officials, departments, and our community, we say, ‘Thank you’ for all you do to enrich the lives of students, for your willingness to work to enhance the educational experience for people of all ages and abilities. We will be here cheering you on in 2023,” McBrayer stated.

Council member Karen Denzine closed out the presentation with expression of her appreciation, “I just want to say ‘Thank you’ to everyone who has been so involved with the Madison Street Festival. It is an awesome, awesome community event, and congratulations to all your winners.”

The Madison Street Festival has been a Madison tradition for forty years. The festival takes place in Downtown Madison on the first Saturday of October, and grant applications are typically open throughout the month of October. Applications are rigorously reviewed based on several criteria and alliance with The Madison Street Festival organization’s mission of funding Madison-based educational services.

For more information visit madisonstreetfestival.org or find them on Instagram @madisonstreetfestival.

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