Crowdfunding campaign launched for the ‘Houghton MI Skatepark’ project

Monday, April 10, 2017

$50,000 goal to win matching grant through MEDC's Public Spaces Community Places initiative

LANSING, Mich. – The city of Houghton will soon be home to a professional grade skatepark with the help of a new crowdfunding campaign, the Michigan Economic Development Corporation, Keweenaw Community Foundation and Houghton MI Skatepark announced today. The campaign is being offered through Michigan-based crowdfunding platform Patronicity. 

If the campaign reaches its crowdfunding goal of $50,000 by June 9, the project will win a matching grant with funds made possible by MEDC’s Public Spaces Community Places program. For project details and to donate, please visit:

“Providing safe and engaging recreation for youth is increasingly important in our communities, and the Houghton MI Skatepark is a great example of a space that accomplishes that,” said MEDC Vice President of Community Development Katharine Czarnecki. “We are pleased to be able to be a resource for this effort.”

Funding raised during this campaign will create the UP’s second professionally-built concrete skatepark. The skatepark will be located in Houghton East Waterfront Park. Professionally designed and constructed by world-class skatepark contractors, the skatepark will serve as a natural gathering space and provide an opportunity for physical activity and social interaction among youth in the area.

The Marquette Skatepark, the only skatepark currently in the U.P., is a two-hour drive for residents on the east side of the U.P. Once completed, the Houghton MI Skatepark is expected to draw daily users from over a 50-mile radius. 

“Public Spaces Community Places is a great program for community vitalization, and it's awesome that it recognizes skateparks as valuable community assets. We're grateful to participate,” said Alex Aho, co-founder of Houghton MI Skatepark. “The match will quickly fund a project that could otherwise take years.”

Public Spaces Community Places is a collaborative effort of the MEDC, MSHDA, the Michigan Municipal League, and Patronicity where local residents can use crowdfunding to be part of the development of strategic projects in their communities and be backed with a matching grant from MEDC. Communities, non-profits and other business entities can apply at

“The Michigan Municipal League strongly supports the concept of placemaking and creating vibrant spaces that people enjoy,” said Dan Gilmartin, CEO and Executive Director for the League. “A skatepark is an excellent way to create placemaking and with backing of Houghton area supporters we are sure this park will be a source of pride for years to come.”

The Public Spaces Community Places initiative started in 2014 with MEDC providing matched funding of up to $50,000 for community improvement projects throughout Michigan. As of April 2, 2017, MEDC has provided $3,475,500 in matching grants. Since the launch of the program, 107 projects have been successful in reaching their goal, with nearly $4.2 million raised from 18,474 individual donors.

About Michigan Economic Development Corporation (MEDC)

The Michigan Economic Development Corporation is the state’s marketing arm and lead advocate for business development, job awareness and community development with the focus on growing Michigan’s economy. For more information on the MEDC and our initiatives, visit For Pure Michigan® tourism information, your trip begins at Join the conversation on: Facebook Instagram LinkedIn, and Twitter.