We are elated to announce the 2023 WinterKids Downhill 24 Outdoor Fund Grantees!
One of the many ways we effectively expand our reach across the state of Maine is by forging strategic partnerships with like-minded organizations. These collaborations are pivotal in advancing our core mission of encouraging children to embrace being active outdoors. An exemplary initiative in this regard is the WinterKids Downhill 24 Outdoor Fund!
For our 2nd year of the WinterKids Downhill 24 Outdoor Fund, 54 organizations across Maine competed for grants totaling $51,000, aimed at helping to get kids outside and active within the communities they serve.
The top vote-getters in each group secured first place and will each be awarded a grant of $10,000. The second-place winners will receive a grant of $5,000, and the third-place contenders will receive $1,500.
From July 3 to July 28, 2023, an online voting process took place, during which over 9,000 members of the public chose the winners in three distinct categories:
- Maine 501(c)(3) nonprofits
- Maine Public Schools
- Maine Parks and Recreation departments
Even more, commendation goes to our honorable mention winners, who placed fourth in their categories. Each of these organizations will be awarded a $500 grant.
Funds Distribution by County
Final Results: Maine Nonprofits
Pine Tree Camp
County: Kennebec County Intended Use: Supporting Pine Tree Camp’s open-door policy for children with disabilities, allowing all to attend regardless of their ability to pay tuition.
Teens to Trails
County: Cumberland County Intended Use: To further support 68+ middle and high school outdoor clubs across Maine with funding for transportation, advisor stipends, and club activities.
Aroostook County Action Program
City: Presque Isle
County: Aroostook County Intended Use: To introduce snowshoeing to low-income children countywide.
HONORABLE MENTION ($500): Maine Youth Fish & Game Association (Stillwater, Penobscot County)
Final Nonprofit Vote Tally
NonProfit Nominees by County
Final Results: Maine Public Schools
South Portland Middle School
City: South Portland
County: Cumberland County Intended Use: Purchase the necessary equipment to have skate skis, skate boots, and skate poles for any student interested In trying out Nordic skiing on groomed trails, as well as a groomer to create trails.
Mariners Soar After School Program at SU 76
City: Deer Isle
County: Hancock County
Intended Use: To establish Middle School Outing Clubs at all three of their sites (Deer Isle-Stonington Elementary, Brooklin Elementary, and Sedgewick Elementary) that offer monthly outings, camping trips, transportation to outdoor events, and camping equipment for loan.
Rangeley Lakes Regional School
County: Franklin County Intended Use: To purchase equipment and fund experiences allowing students to continue expanding and strengthening connections with staff and nature.
HONORABLE MENTION ($500): Molly OcKetT School (Fryeburg, Oxford County)
Final Public Schools Vote Tally
Public Schools Nominees by County
Final Results: Maine Parks & Recreation Programs
Town of Millinocket
County: Penobscot County Intended Use: Will be put toward the purchase of a rope tow lift to be placed at the Town’s sliding hills in the Millinocket Recreation Complex and toward the purchase of grooming equipment for Katahdin Area Trails.
Saco Parks & Recreation
County: York County
Intended Use: To expand recreation hubs at city-owned, water-front parks and provide recreation equipment.
City of Bangor Parks & Recreation
County: Penobscot County Intended Use: Will be put toward purchasing winter mountain biking grooming equipment and snowshoes and to help fund a new mountain biking Pump Track.
HONORABLE MENTION ($500): Quarry Road Trails (Waterville, Kennebec County)
Final Parks & Rec Vote Tally
Parks & Rec Nominees by County
Congratulations to all of these deserving grantees! We commend their commitment to getting kids outdoors and active, positively impacting the physical and mental well-being of Maine’s youth.
For more information about the WinterKids Downhill 24 Outdoor Fund, please visit https://winterkids.org/downhill-24/winterkids-downhill-24-outdoor-fund/.