Thursday, September 24, 2020
Sept. 24, 2020

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Vancouver’s Downtown Association whittles Launchpad grant candidates to dozen

The Columbian

Vancouver’s Downtown Association announced 12 semifinalists for its new program that will give the winner a $40,000 grant and a spot in downtown Vancouver to open a retail store.

The finalists include Blackbird Alchemy, Butcher & Baker, Gouger Cellars, Flamingo Folia, Foxhole Den, Main Street Market, Natural Earth & Body, Partyville, Sandwich LLC, Scout Burger, The Civilized Wolf and The Games We Play.

The program, called the Launchpad, is in its first year. Four finalists will be announced on April 4, and the winner will be announced on May 7.

The Launchpad event is still seeking donations from community members and through its GoFundMe (

“All of them are new except a few businesses looking to expand from a smaller to a larger operation,” executive director Michael Walker said.

The association also announced its annual Van-Tastic Awards on Thursday. Crown Bridal won the Ooh Ahh Award; Amaro’s Table won the Believe & Achieve Award; Angst Gallery won the Heart of Downtown Award; Treat won the Vancouver-Made Award; Michael Leary won the Carl Dobbs Award, and RYD won the Yellow Umbrella Award.

Walker said he is also seeking donations for the association’s flower basket program (

This story was updated to correct the name of Gouger Cellars. The name of Foxhole Den was also changed to remove a trademarked term.