Crowdfunding campaign launched for Rutherford Pool’s “Bathhouse 2.0” project in Ypsilanti

Tuesday, January 8, 2019

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

LANSING, Mich. – Ypsilanti’s favorite community pool will soon be updated and receive a new bathhouse through a new crowdfunding campaign, the Michigan Economic Development Corporation and nonprofit Friends of Rutherford Pool announced today. The campaign is being offered through Michigan-based crowdfunding platform Patronicity.

If the campaign reaches its crowdfunding goal of $50,000 by March 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:

“The Rutherford Pool serves as a great asset and gathering space that is accessible for the entire community of Ypsilanti,” said MEDC Senior Vice President of Community Development Katharine Czarnecki. “This project will enhance the use of the pool and give greater opportunities for all to enjoy it. We are pleased to provide resources for this effort through our Public Spaces Community Places program.”

The volunteers and Friends of Rutherford have maintained the bathhouse but after decades of use it is in need of a rehabilitation. The campaign will make updates to the exterior of the Rutherford Pool space and completely renovate the interior of the crumbling bathhouse. The updates will include a new gazebo and shaded walkway and the bathhouse will receive two gender neutral/family bathrooms and a complete update of the men’s and women’s locker rooms. After providing 47 years of use, this community resource needs some help to remain a communal space for 47 more years.

“We are thrilled to partner with the MEDC through its Patronicity matching grant program. This $50,000 matching opportunity will help motivate citizens in Ypsilanti and the surrounding communities to join in the bathhouse renovation campaign for Rutherford Pool,” said Friends of Rutherford Pool Board Chair John Weiss. “The bathhouse renovation will help us sustain this important community space as a safe, welcoming place for children, families and the general public to recreate, have fun, and learn water safety.”

Public Spaces Community Places is a collaborative effort of the MEDC, the Michigan Municipal League, and Patronicity, in which 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, nonprofits and other business entities can apply at

“Providing appealing recreational opportunities is key to great placemaking,” said Dan Gilmartin, CEO and executive director of the Michigan Municipal League. “This campaign will help Ypsilanti enhance and extend the life of Rutherford Pool, which has been loved by the community for many years.”

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 December 31, 2018, MEDC has provided $5,844,441 in matching grants. Since the launch of the program, 189 projects have been successful in reaching their goal, with $6.8 million raised from 35,715 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.