The city of Marble Falls is bringing holiday cheer to its downtown this season thanks to an Economic Development Corp. grant.
The Marble Falls EDC awarded the approximate $29,000 Community Leverage Grant on Sept. 2. The money will go into the city’s general fund and be used for four projects aimed at attracting more people to downtown: a holiday skating rink, Christmas decor, art installations, and an outdoor speaker system.
“Our downtown master plan calls for the downtown and Main Street to be the heart of the community, and so we feel like these four objectives will help us meet that overall goal,” said Erin Burks, the city’s downtown coordinator.
Officials estimate the total cost of the four projects at $84,000. The remaining funds for the projects will come from city coffers.
The grant provides matching funds to organizations that undertake projects that “enhance our quality of place, improve the overall well-being of the city, and maximize resources,” according to the EDC’s website.
Community Leverage Grants have been used for park improvements, soccer field expansions, arts projects, and more in Marble Falls.
“Everything, from bringing in art to bringing in Christmas activities so we can really celebrate families being together (in downtown), contributes to that goal,” Burks said. “Everything from going ice skating to grabbing dinner, we want to create those memories.”
The Marble Falls Parks and Recreation Department hosted a popup skating rink last Christmas, and officials plan to bring it back this holiday season.
The project that will take the longest to finish is the outdoor sound system, which will use existing downtown lamp posts. The city will use the sound system to pipe in music and make announcements.
“There’s a lot of really good things that can come out of this,” Burks said of the grant.