NMU’s Fall Fest a good opportunity for all

Amy Clickner, CEO, Lake Superior Community Partnership

As summer is winding down, back to school is fastly approaching. If you’re a business in Marquette County, consider checking out the upcoming Fall Fest event happening at Northern Michigan University.

When school is in session, NMU’s student enrollment accounts for 11.5 percent of Marquette County’s population. In addition, NMU employs 2,402 of their students who then reinvest in the community. Just in campus visits and Wildcat Weekend alone, NMU brings in 11,502 visitors to the area.

In 2018, it was estimated by NMU that 80.3 percent of NMU students are Michigan residents, the additional 19.7 percent are from various parts of the United States and other countries. The diversity of the Wildcat student body and faculty is a significant part of our community’s dynamic culture. Concerts, athletic events and other scholastic activities bring beautiful flavor to Marquette County and keep our community engaged with the university.

As a way to engage students, faculty and staff, along with the local business community, an annual Fall Fest takes place every year on the first day of class. Fall Fest is a collaboration between the NMU Center for Student Enrichment, NMU Leadership Program Office and the Lake Superior Community Partnership. The educational institution and economic driver have goals of making sure local businesses continue to grow and thrive in the community. Fall Fest is not only a warm welcome for students coming back, but also an economic development opportunity for businesses, clubs and organizations to introduce their products or services to the campus community.

Beginning in August 1987, the first Fall Fest had 15 participating businesses. In 2018, 87 businesses, 21 nonprofit organizations seeking volunteers and 109 student organizations participated in Fall Fest.

Fall Fest continues to be an excellent way to introduce students to local businesses. Students also have the chance to connect with other student organizations and explore volunteer opportunities with community nonprofit organizations, at Fall Fest.

This year’s event will be held from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m., Aug. 26. Local businesses, clubs and organizations are encouraged to purchase a booth ($80 per booth for LSCP members, $140 for non-members) and be present as we welcome students, faculty and staff back for another semester. Vendors must register with the LSCP office by Aug. 19.

For more information or to register for the 2019 Fall Fest at NMU, call the Lake Superior Community Partnership Office at 906-226-6591 or visit our website at www.marquette.org to register online. Payment is due upon registration.

Editor’s NOTE: Amy Clickner is CEO of the Lake Superior Community Partnership. Her twice-monthly column will address topics of interest to the local business community.