Why are we renaming Main Street Project?

Rocky Casillas blog, mainstreet project

This is something many of you are probably wondering about and your curiosity has led you here for answers, right?!

Well, here’s the scoop. We have been known as Main Street Project for a long time (over a decade!), so the decision to change the name wasn’t easy. We had staff concerned about our name equity, while others feared we’d lose our supporters and followers in the transition. Two years went by since our initial conversation and our staff and board have not only reached a consensus, but begun the official renaming process. This is it!

There are many reasons why we need a new name and there couldn’t be a better time than now.

For one, Main Street Project no longer reflects the work that we do – it does not tell the story of our mission. If we’re being honest, it’s a confusing name for a food and agriculture organization to have. Without our logo, there is nothing in the name that speaks to our regenerative ag work or our commitment to beginning and immigrant farmers. Sometimes we get mistaken for a downtown development agency, especially by new audiences who might not be familiar with our efforts. And so, we find ourselves spending too much time explaining our name, when the name should speak for itself.

Main Street Project is also not an authentic name. There are several other organizations using the name, including a nonprofit Health Center in Canada, another entity in the Twin Cities and even right here in our town of Northfield – The Northfield Downtown Development Corporation (NDDC) has a program called Main Street Project. We need something original. Something that sets us apart and positions our work in a more memorable way.

Those who follow our story know that we’ve recently acquired 100 acres of farmland in SE Minnesota in need of restoration. Some of you might’ve even visited the farm already. This was a huge step for our organization and we couldn’t have done it without all of our partners. This farm offers a home to our work and gives us the capacity to further support aspiring farmers, enhance local wealth and food security, and continue to innovate a resilient agriculture system that has the power to heal our lands, clean our waters, and nourish our communities.

We want our renaming process to be meaningful, that’s why we’re looking to all of YOU – our community – to help us find our new name. If you have name ideas we ask that you please share them with us through our quick 5 min survey by Nov 4th!

Thank you in advance for your name contribution(s)!

Stay tuned for an official reveal of our new name in the new year!

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