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Created In The Corridor

Created In The Corridor

 
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Created in the Corridor: Small Town Non-Profits

Updated: Thursday, February 13 2014, 09:26 AM CST
TIPTON, Iowa (CBS 2/FOX 28) - When you hear 'economic development' you probably think of business people and industrial parks. Fair enough. But it's so much more than that when you consider what non-profits do to create in the Corridor. Especially in small communities where non-profits can be vital to sustaining and growing the local economy.
 
“You’ll be able to go to the right or to the left but here, it’s going to be steps that go up,” says Lori Miller as she describes, in an empty shell of a building, what the entrance will soon look like in her non-profit group's Heartland Sports Complex in Tipton. By Spring, hopefully March 1, the facility will house multiple basketball and volleyball courts, batting cages, golf nets, a running track and more. Explains Miller, the center's director, “On a weekend, we could have probably thirty, sixty teams here.” Teams from all over Cedar County, the state and possibly beyond. This facility is similar to what the city has wanted to build for years but hasn't had the resources. City Manager Chris Nosbisch says, “Now we’re talking about partnerships and how the city can utilize this facility, the school can utilize this facility and in the end it’s a win-win for everybody.”

Just across town, you step back in time when you walk into the Spear House and Barn Bed & Breakfast. A non-profit saved the home, built in the late 1800's by Alex and Harriet Spear. “We took the better part of two years to put it in order, to turn it into (what it is now) because it was very different when we came in,” explains Kris Clark of Old Union School, Inc. Now, visitors come from all over the country stay at the B & B. And they spend money. “They do lots of things in Tipton," says Clark. "They eat out, they buy gas, they shop downtown. They do lots of different things.”

Miller envisions the same for her visiting sports teams."(They might) just want to get out and explore the city.  They can go out and go to the pool if it’s in the summertime, so it’s huge.”
 
“Thank you everyone. We couldn’t be happier,” says a grateful Shellby Wiskus, treasurer of the Hardacre Theatre Preservation Association. She wants to send that message to all of the donors who helped her non-profit save the historic theatre for renovation. They know the promise it holds for the arts in Tipton and for putting feet downtown.“Keep this town alive, keep the storefronts open, keep the people coming in and draw people here,” explains Wiskus.

And local government is thankful for all of these grass-roots efforts...to realize projects it can't always do on its own. Says Nosbisch,"If we can’t and we say we can’t, they’ll find a way to do it themselves. And they’ve proven that on more than one occasion here.”
 
To learn more about these non-profits, or to contribute to their economic development efforts, visit the News Links section of this website. Created in the Corridor: Small Town Non-Profits


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