Crowdfunding campaign launched for Lawton SplashPad

Wednesday, May 15, 2019

$40,000 goal to win matching grant through MEDC’s Public Spaces Community Places initiative

LANSING, Mich. – The Village of Lawton will soon gain an accessible water play area for all to enjoy in Lewis Park through a new crowdfunding campaign, the Michigan Economic Development Corporation and the Village of Lawton announced today. The campaign is being offered through the Michigan-based crowdfunding platform Patronicity.

If the campaign reaches its crowdfunding goal of $40,000 by July 15, 2019, 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 Lawton SplashPad will be a fun space for community members to play and cool off in the water features or use the pavilion to kick back and observe,” said MEDC Senior Vice President of Community Development Katharine Czarnecki. “We are pleased to provide resources for this effort through our Public Spaces Community Places program.”

By adding an interactive water feature to Lawton’s Lewis Park, families can participate in multiple outdoor recreational activities all in one space. The Lawton SplashPad will repurpose underused portions of the park, allowing for various age-appropriate play areas. Parents can relax in the shade of a gazebo or picnic pavilion while watching their children play in the SplashPad in a safe, clean environment. People can also play basketball or pickle ball just a few feet away from the SplashPad. Clean, full-service public restrooms will be available for convenience, contributing to the overall usability of the space.

“The Public Spaces, Community Places matching grant makes a huge difference to a small community like ours. With fewer than 1,900 residents in our village, our ability to raise funds for a substantial project like the SplashPad is somewhat limited,” said Village Manager Dan Bishop. “The opportunity to partner with the Michigan Economic Development Corporation is a true game-changer for our town and residents in the surrounding area. Together we can make the future brighter and improve this home we love.”

Public Spaces Community Places is a collaborative effort of the MEDC, the Michigan Municipal League, and Patronicity, in which 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

“Placemaking is often about improving on existing assets in a community and that’s the goal of this project in Lawton,” said Dan Gilmartin, CEO and executive director of the Michigan Municipal League. “Adding the Lawton SplashPad and related enhancements planned in the long-established Lewis Park will continue to make this area a destination for residents and visitors 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 May 15, 2019, MEDC has provided $6,405,411 in matching grants. Since the launch of the program, 211 projects have been successful in reaching their goal, with more than $7.5 million raised from 39,255 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.