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Saturday, August 1, 2015

Flint Local 432 wins GOOD Maker Grant

By Cal Sawyer and Times Reporter

The Flint Local 432 is another step closer to some serious upgrades after they won the GOOD Maker Grant.
Dan Moilanen, the manager of the Flint Local, entered the contest for a $5,000 grant just minutes before the contest ended. “A friend of mine that works at a non-profit organization sent me a link a few hours before the deadline. We had a documentary video on our venue already made, so I sent that into the contest right before it ended,” Moilanen said.
The GOOD Maker Grant, hailing from GOOD Magazine, is aimed at individuals and organizations to tap into the public’s creativity and energy to address an issue that’s important to them. The Local plans on using the contest money to help sharpen up the venue and enhance the experience for concert attendees and the bands playing.
“First we’ll probably replace our existing stage with a larger permanent stage, which will lead to easier set-up for the bands,” Moilanen said. The Local will also upgrade their lighting system by changing to a LED system for different colors and schemes. LED lighting will also save money as it is energy efficient.
The Local is also planning on implementing a sound dampening system, possibly their biggest upgrade.
“We had sound engineers come in and give us advice,” Moilanen said.
The venue has little escape for sound waves due its concrete composition. The installation of a drop ceiling, fiberglass walls and insulator sheets will dramatically dampen the sound waves and lead to an enrichening concert experience.
“Winning this contest is really exciting…to be able to have significant improvements done to the quality of the venue will make it feel more like a legitimate music venue,” Moilanen said.
These upgrades are not yet finished but they are planning on getting to work once they receive their check from the contest.
“We’re only going forward from here,” Moilanen said. “We were long overdue.”
In the meantime, September offers a slew of bands coming to play the venue, including The Most Dangerous Animal, Luther, Empty Orchestra and Cheap Girls.
Follow the Flint Local 432 on their Facebook page for information on upcoming shows and other news at https://www.facebook.com/FlintLocal432

Cal can be reached at cals@umflint.edu.

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