Recent Grants

Preserving Beaver Island HIstory

January 16, 2020

In the fall of 2019, the Beaver Island Historical Society began the project of expanding the Mormon Print Shop, which houses their office along with some museum exhibits and a gift shop. The need to expand was fueled by the number of unique artifacts and historical materials that they wanted to display. Beaver Island's history is unique and celebrated by locals and visitors alike. In a recent 9&10 News feature, Beaver Island resident, Angel Welke, said that "history is just as important as the present. This is how we got here. This is how Beaver Island became as unique as it is." 

The new museum space will feature a large rare mural, called Hauling in the Nets, which is currently being restored in Detroit. When the mural returns to the Island, it will be the main feature of the new historical museum's conference room and meeting space. The new museum will also feature exhibits on the natural history of Beaver Island, among other topics. The organization looks forward to showcasing Beaver Island's unique history in the new space. 

The Beaver Island Historical Society was founded in 1957 to collect and share the fascinating history of Beaver Island. A remote island in Lake Michigan, it has witnessed many interesting and unique historical events and has been home to various groups including Native Americans, a Mormon branch known as the Strangites, Irish immigrants, fisherman, lumberjacks, and many more.

The Historical Society currently operates two museums on the island, the Print Shop Museum, and the Marine Museum, as well as two additional historical sites, Heritage Park, and the Protar home. They offer several services to visitors, including genealogical research, copies of archival photos, and a series of historical journals and other books for purchase.  Additionally, they host many events throughout the year to promote the island’s history. For more updates on the construction project and more about the Historical Society, check out their Facebook page

Grant funding over the last two years helped to make this work possible, including an estate gift that longtime Beaver Island visitor and passionate supporter, Henry L. Hill, made through the Community Foundation. Learn more about how to leave a legacy with the Community Foundation. 




When you give to Community Grantmaking Funds, you are providing for current and future projects happening right here at home. With grant cycles each spring and fall, nonprofit partners, schools, and individual communities working in Charlevoix County have the opportunity to seek support for worthwhile places, programs, and projects.

For a complete list of grant awards, and additional information (summaries) about each grant, click on the links below.


October 2019 Grant Awards
October 2019 Grant Summaries


March 2019 Grant Awards

March 2019 Grant Summaries


October 2018 Grant Awards

October 2018 Grant Summaries





October 11, 2019

Construction for an approximately 6.2 mile new non-motorized trail linking Boyne City, Boyne Valley Township, Boyne Mountain Resort and the Village of Boyne Falls formally began with a ground breaking ceremony held Wednesday morning, October 9th, along the route.  According to Boyne City City Manager Michael Cain the construction of the trail reflects the vision, collaboration and perseverance of many that are making the long proposed trail a reality.  Special recognition was given to Boyne City resident and Park and Recreation Board Chairperson Michael Sheehan for his some two decades of effort to get the trail to construction.  Representatives from many of the organizations associated with the project were present for the ground breaking.  Those organizations included: North Country Bike Club, Charlevoix County Community Foundation, Charlevoix County, Boyne Valley Township, Village of Boyne Falls, Boyne Mountain, Frey Foundation, Michigan Department of Transportation, Michigan Department of Natural Resources and the City of Boyne City.

Construction for the new non-motorized trail will continue this fall, resume in the spring of 2020 with a scheduled completion date on June 11, 2020  Work on the over 1.77 million dollar trail in being done by J & N Constriction of Gaylord.  OHM of Petoskey designed the project.

When completed, the trail is anticipated to be an economic driver in the region, serving residents and visitors alike.  Through Boyne City, users of the new trail will be able to connect to existing and future phases of the Boyne City/Charlevoix Trail, providing connections to the Wheelway which connects Charlevoix, Petoskey and Harbor Springs.  Future efforts may provide connections to the Traverse City area TART trail system and ultimately the Iron Belle that traverses the entire state of Michigan.

Visit our Facebook page for more frequent updates about grant impact. 



This spring, the Youth Advisory Committee (YAC) approved a grant to help fund the purchase of a new JY15 sailboat for the Lake Charlevoix Mariners’ Sail Charlevoix program. Sail Charlevoix has been operating in some form or another as a non-profit program to teach Charlevoix County youth how to sail since 1985. The JY15 is the main platform they use for teaching all ages and ability levels. In the past year, the Sail Charlevoix program trained more than 150 students, mostly between the ages of 8 and 17, the basics of sailing on Lake Charlevoix. Thanks to the funding from the YAC and other generous donors, plus the commitment of the Lake Charlevoix Mariners themselves, the group was able to purchase two new boats for the program this season. The new boats are built of solid fiberglass by a Michigan company, and as such, are expected to be more robust, easier to repair, and should last a lot longer than the previous boats. Pictured are the new boats in use this summer during the Sail Charlevoix program.