Thank you for your interest in Main Street America. Learn more at

The Main Street America Institute is pleased to provide 10 (ten) $500 travel scholarships to attendees of the 2024 Community Transformation Workshop (CTW) in Des Moines, Iowa on October 15 and 16 (arrival on October 14). Scholarship selections will be based on financial need, and will be distributed through a reimbursement process - dependent upon submission of receipts. Scholarships will be awarded on a first come, first serve basis as applicants meet eligibility requirements, and will close when ten attendees have been selected. Therefore, we encourage you to submit an application as soon as you've registered for the CTW if eligible. The application will formally close on Friday, September 13th at 11:59 pm or when all scholarships have been awarded.

T-Mobile Hometown Grants is a $25 million, five-year initiative to support the people and organizations who help small towns across America thrive and grow. Hometown Grants are given every quarter to up to 25 small towns. Apply for funding to support a community project of your choice, like revitalizing or repurposing a historic structure, creating a downtown asset or destination, or improving a space where friends and neighbors gather. Projects that add to a sense of place or could lead to further investment are of particular interest. We look forward to learning more about your town and your project.

Thank you for your interest in presenting at the 2025 Main Street Now, Main Street America's annual conference and the largest national gathering of local leaders working to advance preservation-based economic opportunity in downtowns and neighborhood commercial districts. The conference will be held in Philadelphia with education sessions taking place Monday, April 7 through Wednesday, April 9, 2025. 

Here are some quick tips to craft a winning proposal: 

  1. Start with a strong title: Choose an engaging and concise title that clearly describes your session – we recommend 8 words or less!  
  2. Stick to your session description: Attendees invest a lot of time in selecting sessions that meet their learning needs based on session descriptions, and they express disappointment when the session content doesn’t match. Please take care in crafting an accurate description that gives attendees a clear idea of what to expect. If selected, you’ll have an opportunity to make fine-tune edits before we publish the agenda. 
  3. Be complete and comprehensive: To make your proposal more compelling, avoid saying "TBD” or including placeholder information. Provide adequate details about your session content and speakers so the review committee can understand your vision. 
  4. Think about format: Main Street Now attendees love practical, interactive sessions. Use the “About” section to tell us how you’ll deliver your content. Consider including techniques and activities you will use to engage the audience. 
  5. Skip the commercials: Education sessions may not be used to self-promote or sell anything. We welcome product experts and consultants, but we encourage you to focus on sharing knowledge and building skills. Consider inviting a Main Street practitioner to speak with you and demonstrate how your product/service has worked on the ground. 
  6. Quality Over Quantity: Please only send us your top three, strongest ideas. This helps ensure top-quality session content for attendees and an enjoyable conference experience for speakers.
  7. Be polished: make sure your proposal is publication-ready by reviewing for clarity, completeness, and spelling and punctuation errors.  
  8. Don’t skip the fine print! Read the Submitter Terms and Conditions carefully – they contain helpful information about what the review committee is looking for and what to expect as a Main Street Now speaker. 
  9. Stay in the loop: Make sure your email address is correct and add to your contacts to receive updates about your proposal.

 If you would like a Word version of this application to assist in the gathering of content and speaker information prior to submission, you can download it here. Please note that applications must be submitted through this online form to be considered. The committee will not accept applications in the form of the Word document above. 

Thank you for your interest in the 2025 Great American Main Street Award! The application will close at 11:59 PM CST on Friday, July 26th. If you have any questions while completing your application, please contact Steve Amraen at  For more information on the award, including scoring criteria, click here.

Upon submission of your application please mail the application fee of $150 to the address below:

National Main Street Center
53 W. Jackson Blvd
Suite 350
Chicago, IL 60604

With the generous support of U.S. Bank, the National Main Street Center's education and professional development program, the Main Street America Institute (MSAI), is offering a tailored learning opportunity to Main Street managers and community revitalization professionals from our nationwide network. U.S. Bank and MSAI are offering a specialized online course, Supporting Small Businesses on Main Street, designed to help you achieve economic vitality goals in your community through a focus on Entrepreneurial Ecosystems, or a strong community support network for business owners. 

Scholarship Opportunity:  

About & Eligibility: As part of U.S. Bank's sponsorship, a limited number of scholarships (20 total) providing registration at a reduced rate of $100 are available to participants serving communities located within U.S. Bank markets. Communities must be located within 10-20 miles of a U.S. Bank location to be considered, with special priority given to participants serving districts located in the states of California, Colorado, Illinois, Kentucky, Minnesota, Missouri, Ohio, Oregon, Washington, and Wisconsin. 

Application & Awards: Scholarships will be awarded on a first-come, first-served basis. Applications will be reviewed on a rolling basis and applicants will receive determinations by Sunday, August 25, 2024. Scholarship recipients will receive a discount code to use at registration. Eligible and interested participants are encouraged to submit scholarship applications as soon as possible and before registering for the course. The application will close on Friday, August 23, 2024, at 11:59 p.m. CDT, or when all scholarships have been awarded.  

Supporting Small Businesses on Main Street: Live sessions held Thursdays, September 5, 12, and 19 from 2:00 - 4:00 pm, CDT.

Generously sponsored by U.S. Bank, this three-week live, online course will prepare participants to uplift small businesses in their communities. Identifying place-based assets and resources for small businesses, participants will better understand how to collaboratively build a strong community support network that centers economic vitality. 

Participants will reinforce and apply what they learn each week by creating a Small Business Guide for their local Main Street, ready for collaboration and distribution by the end of the course.  

  • Learn the six categories of a small business support environment, and how each is connected to and dependent upon Place. 
  • Understand your role in the support of small business owners and entrepreneurs. 
  • Identify local resources and opportunities for business owners and entrepreneurs.  
  • Create a distributable small business guide for your local Main Street district.  

This course is led by Main Street America's Senior Manager of Education, Tasha Sams, and features instruction from an array of Main Street America staff, including: 

Jackie Swihart, Program Officer for Revitalization Services 

Gustavo Ustariz, Senior Manager for Entrepreneur and Small Business Support 

Joi Cuartero Austin, Senior Program Officer, Economic Vitality 

Frankye Payne, Director of Chicago Main Streets 

MSA Staff will be joined by a host of external guest speakers, including:  

Abby Ober, Director of Engagement, Main Street Ventures, Cincinnati, Ohio 

Bailey Richards, Downtown Coordinator, the City of Hazard, Hazard, Kentucky 

Monique Kuykendoll Quarterman, Chief Executive Officer, The Enterprise Center, Chattanooga, Tennessee 

...and more to be announced!  

 FAQ Why should I participate in this course? 

If Economic Vitality is on your mind, this is the Main Street course for you. This specialized learning experience, supported by U.S. Bank, will give you new insights, tools, and strategies to foster entrepreneurship, support small business owners, and retain local businesses. Without small businesses, Main Streets don't exist. After the course, MSAI staff will stay in contact to assist with any further professional development needs.     

What is the cost of the course if I don't receive a scholarship? The member price for this course without a U.S. Bank funded scholarship would be $275.00. The non-member price is $350. You can register directly for the course on our education platform.

Thank you for your interest in presenting at the 2024 Illinois Main Street Conference. This year's conference will be held in Batavia, Illinois, November 12-14, 2024. Education sessions will take place Wednesday, November 13 to Thursday, November 14.

Topics may include, but are not limited to:

  • Expanding on the Main Street Approach: Design, Promotion, Organization and Economic Vitality
  • Building equitable entrepreneurial ecosystems
  • Housing developments or initiatives 
  • Small scale developments: how to foster, finance and build
  • Tourism: partnering and developing downtown as an asset
  • Preservation: both physical infrastructure and cultural heritage
  • Navigating local legislation
  • General advocacy
  • Leadership development 
  • Engaging and partnering with building owners

Main Street America