Downtown Pitch Terms and Guidelines

Downtown Pitch – Mt. Pleasant Competition Guidelines

Are you a business downtown looking to expand or build up your business? Or maybe you have an idea to make our downtown more unique? Businesses located in downtown Mt. Pleasant’s business district and residents with ideas for our downtown are welcome to apply for the Downtown Pitch Mt. Pleasant Competition. Participating businesses will be eligible to win a range of investment to fund their ideas and make them a reality! The program details and competitive process will be administered by Middle Michigan Development Corporation (MMDC). 

Objective of the Downtown Pitch – Mt. Pleasant Competition 

  • The primary objective of the Downtown Pitch – Mt. Pleasant Competition is to enhance the vibrancy of our downtown through community support of locally owned businesses and our downtown district. 

Goals of the Downtown Pitch – Mt. Pleasant Competition 

  1. Support the growth of locally owned, downtown businesses by providing access to capital to enhance and expand businesses.
  2. To generate new ideas that foster downtown vibrancy. 
  3. To engage with community stakeholders who are passionate about our community and desire to be more actively involved in fostering its resiliency. 

Eligibility Overview

Businesses that meet the following criteria and are located in Mt. Pleasant’s Central Business District is eligible to apply for the Business Vibrancy Award. 

  • The business sells products and/or services face to face AND has a physical location within a traditional downtown, historic neighborhood commercial corridor, or area planned and zoned for concentrated commercial development (Ex. The business has a storefront location downtown) 
  • The business will have, or intends to have, control over the site for which they are applying prior to application. Please note: changes in the proposed business location after grant selection may result in grant being forfeited. 
  • The business may be operating as a for profit or non-profit
  • Project must be completed within 1 year

Individuals who love downtown Mt. Pleasant, MI and have an idea to help enhance it are eligible to apply for the Community Vibrancy Award. 

  • The individual plans to use the grant award to support activating outdoor public space in downtown Mt. Pleasant. Eligible types of projects include, but are not necessarily limited to: 
    • an event that encourages people to visit downtown Mt. Pleasant
    • a public amenity that would benefit visitors to downtown Mt. Pleasant (addition of benches, bike racks, flower boxes, etc.) 
    • a pop up retail experience
    • a place-based improvement project (murals, art work, etc.)
  • Individuals must demonstrate how this project supports the vision and goals stated in the City of Mt. Pleasant’s Master Plan.
  • Any project proposed to take place in the public right of way will need the approval and any associated permits from the City’s Department of Public Works.
  • Projects will need to be reviewed by the City for compliance with applicable ordinances, including zoning and the applicable building and fire codes in order to qualify for award.
  • Project must be completed within 1 year 

Competition Deliverables

Application 
Pitch Presentation

Competition Process

Step 1:   Submit application deadline: July 14th, 2022

Visit MMDC website link and complete the application, submit the application by email to , or deliver to 200 E. Broadway St., Mt. Pleasant, MI 48858.  

The application will ask for detailed information regarding your idea including the moment you came up with the idea (what is your story, what made you move forward with your idea?), The idea itself (what problem did you identify, what is your idea going to fix?, how will this idea benefit the downtown area overall), The advantage (what makes your idea unique, better, faster, stronger?), The future (how will you spend your funds, next steps and where are you headed). 

Step 2: Application Process

After online submission, you will receive communication for verification of eligibility and agreement with use of funds. 

Step 3: Kickoff meeting and Presentation milestones delivered

On June 20th, 2022 at 10 am and June 23rd, 2022 at 6 pm a Kickoff and Q&A meeting will be held at the MMDC office at 200 E. Broadway St., Mt. Pleasant, MI 48858 for Business Vibrancy Applicants .On July 7th, 2022 at 6 pm and July 12th, 2022 at 10 am a Kickoff and Q&A meeting will be held at the MMDC office for Community Vibrancy Applicants. At each kickoff session, participants will receive a welcome packet with important templates, dates and details. The kickoff meeting is not required but highly recommended to ensure participants understand expectations and timeline of the competition deliverables. 

Step 4: Pitch and Executive Summary Development

Participants will be given milestones to complete in three phases. Phase 1 Pitch must be delivered and approved by August 3rd, 2022.  From there, Phase 2 Pitch delivered and approved by September 28th, 2022.  Final Pitch Deck presentation to be delivered and approved by October 19th, 2022 . 

A strong Pitch Deck will be presented in PowerPoint format. Finalists will be delivered a template pitch deck to communicate details including Problem, Solution, Benefit to both the business and the downtown,  Project Timeline,Team and Roles, and Ask. Must be no longer than 10 minutes.  

Step 5: Finalists announced

Week of October 24th, 2022, the top finalists will be announced and invited to participate in the Downtown Pitch – Mt. Pleasant competition on November 9th, 2022.  It is mandatory to present in person for the competition.  All finalists will have access to the Scorecard to help understand the criteria judges will be looking for.  

Required Key Dates & Sign-Offs

  • Submission Deadline:  July 14th, 2022
  • Kickoff Meeting for Business Vibrancy Applicants:  June 20th, 2022 and June 23rd, 2022
  • Kickoff Meetings for Community Vibrancy Applicants: July 7th, 2022 and July 12th, 2022
  • Phase 1 Pitch Review:  August 3rd, 2022
  • Phase 2 Pitch Review: September 28th, 2022
  • Phase 3 Pitch Review and Presentation Run Through: October 19th, 2022
  • Finalists Announced October 24th, 2022

Terms and Conditions: 

The purpose of the Competition is to be part of an overall program aimed at systematically enhances downtown vibrancy by (i) facilitating downtown business enhancement and expansion through mentorship and increased access to capital and ii) fostering community support through generation and nurturing of ideas to enhance downtown outdoor spaces through the introduction of community-led ideation. This Competition will award over $16,000 in prizes.    

 Applicant Conditions

  1. Applications can only be submitted once.  An individual who applies on behalf of a business entity represents and warrants he or she has requisite authority to act on behalf of such entity.
  2. For purposes hereof, “applicants” includes individuals and business entities.  There is no limit to the number of people on an applicant’s team.
  3. All applications must be the original work of the applicant making the submission.
  4. The decisions of the Reviewing Parties are final, including interpretation of these Terms and Conditions.
  5. Applicants who engage in immoral, illegal or other activity that may adversely affect the image of Downtown Pitch – Mt. Pleasant Competition, or any of their affiliates, or other applicants, are ineligible for the Competition.
  6. All applicants and award recipients must comply with these Terms and Conditions.  Any violation of these Terms and Conditions will disqualify an applicant from the Competition, and result in forfeiture of any awards the applicant received in connection with the Competition.

 Applicant Representations and Covenants

  1. By submitting an application, applicants represent and warrant that:
  2. The information in the application is and will be true and accurate.
  3. The ideas contained in the application will not infringe upon the rights, including privacy and intellectual property rights, of any third party.
  4. The applicant has a reasonable basis for holding the intellectual property that forms the basis or is integral to the applicant’s business or the proposed business submitted in the Competition.
  5. The applicant has and will have the right and authority to submit the content in its application to Downtown Pitch – Mt. Pleasant Competition.
  6. The applicant will obtain permission or a license, as appropriate, for any third-party materials, information or other intellectual property contained in its application.
  7. The applicant will comply with all applicable laws and regulations in connection with its activities relating to the Competition.
  8. The applicant will not attempt to hold Downtown Pitch – Mt. Pleasant Competition or MMDC responsible or liable for any third-party violation of its intellectual property rights as a result of participation in the Competition.
  9. The applicant consents to Downtown Pitch – Mt. Pleasant Competition and/or MMDC performing a background check with respect to the applicant and its principals.

Confidentiality and Intellectual Property

Access to the applications is granted to Downtown Pitch – Mt. Pleasant and MMDC(including its officers, managers, members, consultants and agents), and Downtown Pitch – Mt. Pleasant sponsors and collaborating partners (collectively, the “Reviewing Parties”).  The Reviewing Parties offer no guarantee of confidentiality, either explicit or implicit, in connection with any data or information presented or discussed by applicants.  The Reviewing Parties will not agree to or sign non-disclosure agreements in connection with any application or applicant.  Applicants requiring non-disclosure agreements should not participate. Before submitting their applications, applicants are urged to confirm with appropriate advisors or legal counsel that any intellectual property described therein is legally held or licensed by the applicant, is non-infringing and appropriately protected.  Applicants should be prepared to provide reasonable back-up documentation for these statements, if requested. The authors of each applicant submission will retain all copyrights to the contents of their submission, provided that the Reviewing Parties may make photocopies, photographs, and video and/or audio recordings of any data or information divulged, presented, or discussed by any applicant throughout that applicant’s participation in the Competition.  By entering the Competition, applicants agree to grant a license to the Reviewing Parties to use such materials without restriction and to conduct such due diligence as the Reviewing Parties determine is necessary or desirable for purposes of evaluating the application and carrying out the Competition as described herein. In addition, the Reviewing Parties will have the right to publicly post certain information about accepted applicants and their applications in the public areas of the Reviewing Parties’ websites, including, but not limited to, name and category of business, logo, and an abstract.  The Reviewing Parties will also have the right to use the content of applicants’ applications for research and other not-for-profit purposes.

Downtown Pitch – Mt. Pleasant Competition does not discriminate against any applicant on the basis of race, color, creed, ethnicity, gender, disability, age, sexual orientation, gender expression, military status or marital status.

 Downtown Pitch– Mt. Pleasant Competition reserves the right to modify these Terms and Conditions in its sole discretion.  In the event of a modification, all applicants will be notified as soon as reasonably possible.

Downtown Pitch – Mt. Pleasant Competition and/or it’s designees reserve the right to use and reproduce information disclosed about yourself, and/or company for purposes of business or publicity (i.e.) photo and video testimony. 

Downtown Pitch – Mt. Pleasant Competition may temporarily or permanently suspend the contest, or modify the contest venues, structure or rules at any time and without advance notice. Competition sponsors, judges, and service providers reserve the right to disqualify and reject any entries and participants for any reason.  

By entering the contest, entrants fully and unconditionally agree to be bound by the rules and the decisions of Downtown Pitch – Mt. Pleasant Competition and the judges, which will be final and binding in all matters relating to the contest. 

Any and all federal, state and local taxes and fees resulting from participation or receipt of any award are the sole responsibility of the participant.  All federal, state, and local laws and rules apply.  

By participating in the contest, all entrants and winners agree to defend, indemnify and hold harmless Downtown Pitch – Mt. Pleasant Competition the judges, and their respective affiliates, partners, representatives, agents, successors, assigns, employees, officers and directors, from any and all liabilities, for losses, harm, damages, injuries, costs or expenses whatsoever including without limitation, property damage or injury which may occur in connection with participation in the contest, for any claims based on third party rights in the entry or arising out of the use of the entry as allowed by these rules including, but not limited to publicity rights, defamation, invasion of privacy, copyright infringement, trademark infringement or any other intellectual property-related cause of action.

Any attempted entry other than as set forth above is prohibited; no automatic, programmed, robotic or similar means of entry are permitted. Downtown Pitch – Mt. Pleasant Competition and its affiliates are not responsible for technology, hardware, software, or communications malfunctions, errors or failures of any kind, lost, congested, or unavailable network or internet connections, incomplete or inaccurate capture of entry information (regardless of cause) or failed, incomplete, garbled, or delayed computer transmissions which may limit one’s ability to enter the contest or vote, including issues resulting from downloading any materials from the contest or Sponsor’s website.

YOU EXPRESSLY AGREE THAT DOWNTOWN PITCH – MT. PLEASANT COMPETITION ITS JUDGES, AFFILIATES, PARTNERS, REPRESENTATIVES, AGENTS, SUCCESSORS, ASSIGNS, EMPLOYEES, OFFICERS AND DIRECTORS SHALL NOT BE LIABLE FOR DAMAGE, LOSS, OR EXPENSE OF ANY KIND ARISING OUT OF OR RESULTING FROM YOUR PARTICIPATION IN THE PITCH A DREAM CONTEST REGARDLESS OF WHETHER SUCH LIABILITY IS BASED IN TORT, CONTRACT, OR OTHERWISE. IN NO EVENT, INCLUDING, WITHOUT LIMITATION, A NEGLIGENT ACT, SHALL PITCH A DREAM, ITS JUDGES, AFFILIATES, PARTNERS, REPRESENTATIVES, AGENTS, SUCCESSORS, ASSIGNS, EMPLOYEES, OFFICERS AND DIRECTORS BE LIABLE TO YOU FOR ANY DIRECT, INDIRECT, SPECIAL, INCIDENTAL, CONSEQUENTIAL, OR PUNITIVE DAMAGES (INCLUDING, WITHOUT LIMITATION, LOSS OF PROFITS, LOSS OR CORRUPTION OF DATA, LOSS OF GOODWILL, WORK STOPPAGE, COMPUTER FAILURE OR MALFUNCTION, OR INTERRUPTION OF BUSINESS), ARISING OUT OF OR IN ANY WAY RELATED TO THE DOWNTOWN PITCH – MT. PLEASANT COMPETITION CONTEST OR ANY OTHER PRODUCTS, SERVICES, OR INFORMATION OFFERED, SOLD, OR DISPLAYED ON THIS SITE, YOUR USE OF, OR INABILITY TO USE, THIS SITE GENERALLY, OR OTHERWISE IN CONNECTION WITH THIS AGREEMENT, REGARDLESS OF WHETHER PITCH A DREAM, ITS JUDGES, AFFILIATES, PARTNERS, REPRESENTATIVES, AGENTS, SUCCESSORS, ASSIGNS, EMPLOYEES, OFFICERS AND DIRECTORS HAVE BEEN ADVISED OF THE POSSIBILITY OF SUCH DAMAGES. BECAUSE SOME STATES DO NOT ALLOW THE LIMITATION OF LIABILITY FOR CONSEQUENTIAL OR INCIDENTAL DAMAGES, THE ABOVE LIMITATION MAY NOT APPLY TO YOU. 

You expressly waive all rights to trial in any action or proceeding instituted in connection with these rules or the contest. Any controversy or claim arising out of or relating to these rules or the contest shall be settled by binding arbitration in accordance with the commercial arbitration rules of the American Arbitration Association.  The prevailing party shall be entitled to recover its expenses (including reasonable attorney fees) in connection with the arbitration and any appeal from the losing party. Any award by the arbitrator shall be final and binding on all parties, subject to any limited right to appeal under the Federal Arbitration Act. Any court having jurisdiction may enter judgment on the arbitrator’s award.  Any such controversy or claim shall be arbitrated on an individual basis, and shall not be consolidated in any arbitration with any claim or controversy of any other party. The arbitration shall be conducted in the State of Michigan, City of Mt Pleasant.  

THESE OFFICIAL RULES AND THE INTERPRETATION OF ITS TERMS SHALL BE GOVERNED BY AND CONSTRUED IN ACCORDANCE WITH THE LAWS OF THE STATE OF MICHIGAN, U.S.A., WITHOUT REGARD TO ITS CONFLICTS OF LAWS RULES. For any disputes with Downtown Pitch – Mt. Pleasant Competition arising out of the contest or the rules that are not subject to arbitration, you agree to submit to the personal and exclusive jurisdiction of the state or federal courts located within Isabella County.