The Dugout Sports Bar & Grill has began making renovations giving the business a facelift for downtown viewers.

Downtown Monroe City (DTMC), the not-for-profit organization spearheading revitalization in downtown Monroe City just announced they have awarded $12,000 in project grants. DTMC was founded in late 2018 by a group of concerned citizens and has caught rapid momentum bringing visible change to the area.

In 2019, DTMC awarded three $1,000 grants to Applebee Tree, the Long Brothers and Maddie’s on Main for their exterior improvement projects. Later that same year the organization, in collaboration with their partners at Missouri Main Street, was able to bring a certified restoration architect to Monroe City. Three local businesses: Opera House Antiques, A & S Printing and The Dugout Sports Bar were the recipients of the building make over architectural renderings. To this point all projects and resources that were available came from local fundraising and Missouri and Federal grants.

Earlier this year, DTMC approached the City of Monroe City about partnering for the Economic Development of downtown Monroe City. The City’s Economic Development Committee saw the results the organization had already accomplished and proposed to City Council that they move forward with a year contract.

“Our partnership with the City of Monroe was the catapult that allowed us to make sizable investments into our downtown district,” states DTMC President Mindy Hays. “The Board has worked diligently to make DTMC a viable, long-term organization that will continue to help foster positive change in not only downtown Monroe City, but also all of town. We couldn’t be happier that City Council recognized the efforts and results thus far, but we are most excited about what is yet to come!”

Hays states that with the additional funds from the City, DTMC is able to make larger impact. In July DTMC began collecting grant applications that would be awarded for exterior renovations.

“We had 11 applications this round, which is more than double what we reviewed last year for the $1,000 grants. It is rewarding to see so many local business women and men investing in the downtown area!” Hays explains.

The following businesses have been selected to receive grant funds:

The Dugout Sports Bar-$4,000 to continue exterior renovations as suggested by the Architect; Pat & Carol Taylor-$4,000 to paint and update the front exterior; Chrissy Doolin for 209 N. Main St. facelift-$3,000; Matthew Perrine for awnings $500; and Opera House $500 for exterior improvements.

“It was incredibly challenging to narrow the field,” explained Hays. We were able to provide funding to 5 of the 11 applications, but that left 6 others without funding. Through fundraising, partnerships and community support we hope to continue helping our downtown entrepreneurs fulfill their dreams.”