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Better Places Crowdfunding Campaign Launched for “Better Bennington Thursday Night Live”

March 21, 2022

State Media Contacts

Shannon Konvicka, Communications Director
Department of Housing and Community Development

Richard Amore, Better Places Program Manager
Department of Housing and Community Development 

Local Media Contactr
Jenny Dewar Executive Director, Better Bennington Corporation

Better Places Crowdfunding Campaign Launched for “Better Bennington Thursday Night Live”
The campaign seeks $5,000 to receive a 2:1 matching grant through the Better Places Program

Bennington, VT – The Vermont Department of Housing and Community Development (DHCD) is thrilled to announce that the first Better Places crowdfunding campaign is officially underway.  The Better Bennington Corporation is seeking to create a diverse weekly outdoor performance series at the Thomson Family Stage in Merchants Park. The campaign is sponsored by the DHCD Better Places Program and offered through the crowdfunding platform developed by Patronicity.

If the crowdfunding campaign reaches its $5,000 fundraising goal by May 9, Thursday Night Live will receive a matching grant of $10,000 from DHCD’s Better Places program.  The funds raised will help pay for the professional performers, the sound engineer, and local gift baskets sourced from downtown merchants to be raffled to event-goers, as well as marketing the event series to encourage residents and visitors to attend and celebrate downtown Bennington.  Learn more about Better Bennington’s Thursday Night Live event series and how to donate at the campaign’s crowdfunding page.

“DHCD is committed to supporting local economic recovery efforts as communities adjust and respond to the impacts of COVID-19,” said DHCD Commissioner Josh Hanford. “It’s more important than ever to find new and creative ways to drive foot traffic to Vermont’s downtowns, which supports local businesses, builds community connections, and creates thriving public places in the heart of our communities.”

“Like most of the world, COVID-19 hit us all hard. Small businesses suffered greatly and had to come up with clever ideas and business shifts to stay open,” said Jenny Dewar, Executive Director of the Better Bennington Corporation. “Despite all that, Bennington continues to grow and expand, with many new businesses opening and MOST of our existing businesses weathering the pandemic. Now it is time to bring the people back downtown. What better way to celebrate and welcome new neighbors to our community than bringing a series of interesting and diverse entertainment to fill our belove Splashpad and highlight all the revitalization of our Downtown.”

This project represents the first of more than approximately 40 to 50 projects across the state that will seek to use crowdfunding campaigns to get DHCD matching grants that will help fund projects to encourage the revitalization and creation of community gatherings spaces. Residents, businesses, and neighbors ready to support vibrant public places, community gathering areas, and local opportunities are encouraged to get involved and support these projects.  Learn more and support Bennington’s Thursday Night Live campaign here.


About Better Places

Better Places is a community matching grant program empowering Vermonters to create inclusive and vibrant public places serving Vermont’s designated downtowns, village centers, new town centers, or neighborhood development areas. The program is led by the Vermont Department of Housing and Community Development in partnership with the Vermont Department of Health, the Vermont Community Foundation, and Patronicity, our crowdfunding experts. The program supports community-led projects that create, revitalize, or activate community gathering areas that bring people together to build welcoming and thriving places across Vermont. 

About Better Bennington Corporation

The mission of the Better Bennington Corporation is to lead and support public and private efforts that enhance downtown as the vital commercial and cultural heart of the community. The Better Bennington Corporation (BBC) is committed to equity, diversity, and inclusion and believes these fundamental principles inform and strengthen the BBC's ability to respond to changing demographics and the needs of all who live in, work in, or visit Downtown Bennington.