New plans for Ludlow auditorium; USDA grants available



FOLA plans to raise money to replace the old seating in the Town Hall Auditorium

FOLA plans to raise money to replace the old seating in the Town Hall Auditorium

At its annual meeting, Friends of Ludlow Auditorium reaffirmed its plans to raise funds to replace the existing seating in the Town Hall Auditorium and will initiate fund raising aimed at purchasing new chairs.

The group’s long-range plans for the auditorium include a possible satellite transmission of live concert programs, the inclusion of Vermont Humanities Council programs and assisting the Music-Comp Opus Concert for area students. The 2014 program schedule may be found at the FOLA website — For additional information, 228-7239.

Rural Business Enterprise grants available

USDA Rural Development is inviting applicants to compete for $150,000 of funding from a special national reserve. There will be one single funding round. Grant fund eligible applicants include nonprofits, municipalities, development corporations and state agencies.

Nearly all businesses can be assisted with the program. However, USDA-RD is placing specific emphasis on the following business sectors in 2014. Only initial application projects meeting one or more of these criteria will be considered for additional state director points in this year’s program.

  • Projects that develop, expand or enhance the viability of agricultural or forestry related value-added businesses.
  • Projects that impact locally produced, locally manufactured food networks and/or distribution systems.
  • Projects that assist in the development or expansion of cooperatively owned businesses (including healthcare).
  • Projects that support USDA’s Bioeconomy Initiative.
  • Projects that facilitate export sales.

Technical assistance (i.e. feasibility studies, marketing plans) and equipment purchases (grantee must retain ownership) are encouraged (i.e. shared business incubator equipment). Projects involving construction or revolving loan funds are discouraged due to limited funds allocated.

Application pre-screening is encouraged prior to submission due to the competitive nature of these limited funds. Call the Montpelier office at 802-828-6002 for pre-screening. Completed applications must be received by RD Montpelier office by close of business Tuesday, April 1, 2014. Applications received after the date will not be eligible.

To learn more about the program, please visit the following website: Application packages can be found on-line at:

For more information or to have a prescreening, call 802-828-6002.

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Filed Under: Business & Personal FinanceBusiness in Brief

About the Author: This item was edited from one or more press releases submitted to The Chester Telegraph.

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