Never Forgotten Coast Announces Microgrants for Nine Mexico Beach Businesses


January 17, 2019

The Never Forgotten Coast campaign and the Mexico Beach Artificial Reef Association today announced nine microgrants that will immediately help businesses in the community hardest hit by Hurricane Michael last year.

“We are excited that the funds raised will become immediate assistance to these businesses that have been greatly affected by this hurricane,” said Alex Workman, Never Forgotten Coast co-founder. “Every day, we see improvements in Mexico Beach. We know the community is strong and resilient, and we hope these grants will provide a little bit more help to this town that we love.”

Cola 2 Cola; Travel Guide; Northwest Florida’s Gulf Coast; Emerald Coast; Mexico Beach; shell shack
Mexico Beach, known as “The Unforgettable Coast,” is a relaxing alternative to the busier beach destinations to the west. Its charms include a collection of locally owned shops and restaurants, three miles of white-sand beach, abundant fishing and wildlife, and family activities. | Photo courtesy of Mexico Beach CDC

The following businesses will receive a $1,000 microgrant:

  • Forgotten Coast Realty lost everything inside the business, including office furniture, computers and other supplies. The funds will be used to replace those supplies.
  • Splendiferous MB is a woman’s clothing store that sustained damage to the building and parking area. The funds will help cover the cost for new gravel in the parking lot.
  • Killer Seafood suffered a total loss of building and all equipment. The funds will be used for a temporary trailer to reopen the restaurant as soon as possible.
  • Pristine Properties Vacation Rentals, LLC lost its entire office and work vehicles. The funds will be used to replace office supplies.
  • Lookout Lounge’s building was completely destroyed. The funds will be used for new cooking equipment.
  • Mexico Beach Marina sustained devastating damage to ships and docks. The funds will be used for marketing to help revive the boating economy in the city.
  • Sharon’s Cafe’s building was a total loss. The funds will be used to purchase new cooking equipment.
  • Mexico Beach Development Council’s building has been torn down as a result of significant damage. The funds will be used to purchase new signage for a new welcome center.
  • KC Sportfishing is a charter fishing company that sustained physical damage to the vessel and loss of business. The funds will be used for marketing to communicate when the business is able to reopen.
Homes and businesses along US 98 are left in devastation by Hurricane Michael on October 12, 2018 in Mexico Beach, Florida.
Homes and businesses along US 98 are left in devastation by Hurricane Michael on October 12, 2018 in Mexico Beach, Florida. | Photo by Mark Wallheiser/Getty Images

On October 10, Hurricane Michael hit as the strongest hurricane to ever make landfall in the Florida Panhandle. The Category 4 Hurricane leveled everything in its path, including most of the homes and businesses that made up the Mexico Beach community.

The microgrant program is in partnership with the Mexico Beach Artificial Reef Association, a nonprofit that has worked in Mexico Beach for more than two decades and has successfully managed millions of dollars in federal grant programs. The Mexico Beach Artificial Reef Association amended its mission statement immediately after Hurricane Michael to begin receiving donations for a variety of hurricane recovery programs.

Businesses interested in applying for the microgrant program can fill out the application here: www.neverforgottencoast.com/microgrant/

The Never Forgotten Coast team has also partnered with award-winning Nashville photographer, Jeremy Cowart, and Tallahassee drone pilot, Jonathan Smith, to capture the stories of Mexico Beach and put faces to the city that has been a home and destination for people all over the world. These powerful images and stories can be seen at www.NeverForgottenCoast.com.

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