Economic Development

Town of Acton Call for Art Proposals!

 

The Town of Acton is issuing a call for Art Proposals due 3/8/24.  Applicants must register on the Town of Acton’s website to obtain the documents here: www.actonma.gov/rfp. Interested parties should contact the Economic Development Office at 978-929-6611 with inquiries and/or attend the zoom information session on Friday 2/16 at 10am. You must register in advance for this webinar at:

https://actonma.zoom.us/webinar/register/WN_Lm1QZmnbQCuakRMLNRSw0A

The session will be recorded. 

Calling all Artists! Untold Stories call for Art

For the Love of our Local Businesses snow date (002)

Acton's new public art project showcases businesses in townActon New Public Art Project


Actons Business Boost

The February issue of the Acton Business Boost has been released!

Check out the latest issue of Acton Business Boost. You can also view our archives and subscribe to future issues below.

 February Issue of Acton's Business Boost

 Archives of Acton Business Boost

 Subscribe to Acton Business Boost

Shop Small. Shop Local.  

This Holiday Season, This Winter & All Year!

Small Business Saturday is an annual national shopping event that occurs on the Saturday following Thanksgiving. It is akin to Cyber Monday or Black Friday but for small businesses. This event encourages consumers to prioritize local shopping and patronize independently-owned establishments within their communities for Black Friday, Cyber Monday & the entire holiday season. 

For Acton Businesses, the Economic Development Office created a directory of all the deals around Town - many extend through the month of March! Shop Small on Small Business Saturday and year round!

Small Bus Saturday


Guide for Acton Business Owners Opens in new window


Graphic for Acton Business Directory

Acton Small Business Energy Efficiency Program (ABEEG)


The ‘Main Street’ Acton Small Business Energy Efficiency Program was launched on Sept 11 offering up to 90% off energy efficiency upgrades!  Additional energy efficiency funds may apply through a special town grant. Sign up for an audit by October 9 to guarantee maximum savings. Qualified Acton businesses can apply for additional town funding by November 25 (rolling basis)....Apply by November 25th. 

Visit Acton Business Energy Efficiency Grant Program | Acton, MA - Official Website (acton-ma.gov) for more information.


Bogi Boutique new energy efficent lighting

Pictured: Acton Business Bogi Boutique owner Jackie Porto showcasing the new energy efficiency lighting as part of the AECOM Eversource ‘Main Street’ program.

Acton's Economic Development Office is happy to announce the opening of Acton's first ever retail pop-up!

It's being held for 8 weeks this summer at 

577 Mass Ave in West Acton.

Join us for our soft open on Friday, 6/23/23 from 12pm-6pm and our ribbon cutting on 7/7/23 at 4:30pm. We are so excited for our entrepreneurs who applied to participate in this program. Many thanks to our partners: 577 Mass Ave, LLC, UpNext and the 495/MW Partnership!

Please stop by and check out the pop up shop and wish them well. 

Soft Opening Pop Up


Our Participating Brands:

Over the coming week's you'll learn more about our participating brands. Want to check them out ahead of time? Click below:

Girly Girl Soaps

iJewelShop

The Fluffy Dog Farm

Free Webinar: Increase Your Sales by Attracting Your Target Market: July 13, 2023 at 1pm


 

This webinar will show you how to determine your target market and how to structure your business to attract your ideal customer.

 

Sign up here: https://www.score.org/event/increase-your-sales-by-attracting-your-target-market

Come Explore a Career with Endless Possibilities!

Acton's Economic Development Office is hosting MassHire's Winter Manufacturing Job Fair on 3/7!

The manufacturing industry in our region is growing while providing quality wages, benefits, training and career growth. Whether you're just entering the labor market or looking for a career change, there's something in this industry for YOU!

This job fair is unique because it consists of four parts:

  1. Job Fair exclusively focused on Manufacturing companies in this region that are hiring right now
  2. Resource fair focused on resource-providers and service-providers that support job seekers
  3. Resume workshops, tips and guidance
  4. Interview workshop, tips and guidance

Interested in participating? 

  • Sign up here if you are an employer.
  • Sign up here if you are a resource provider.
  • Sign up here if you are a job seeker.

Questions? Reach out to Julie!

2023 Winter Manufacturing Career and Resource Fair

Free Webinar on March 2, 2023

Manufacturing Apprenticeship Programs: Create your own pipeline of workers

Employers need skilled workers

Young people, career changers & workers interested in upward mobility want a path to a good job without accruing lots of debt. NAMC-registered apprenticeships can provide this.

What are Registered Apprenticeships?

They are flexible and customizable to your company's specific needs. NAMC will help you develop a training plan that outlines the the types and lengths of specialized, related instruction of your choice. Apprenticeships can be used to develop higher levels skills in dedicated incumbent manufacturing workers, of for an office worker, a maintenance mechanic, or any other position. To learn more about these resources, please contact Maryanne Ham, Executive Director of NAMC.

Attend a free workshop to learn more!

Register here

NAMC March 2 2023 event

Energy Efficiency Grants!

Applications open 2/23/23 for Energy Efficiency grants. To read more about the program or to apply, go here

This ARPA-funded grant program is providing business owners and multi-family property owners up to $2000 for implementing energy efficiency improvements recommended through a Mass Saves Energy Audit. Get help covering the cost of the improvements through this grant program while lowering your overhead operating costs. A Win-Win for the business community and the environment! Apply now!

Green House

Workforce Solutions for Employers:

A Free Workshop Covering Employer Resources in Massachusetts including grants & technical assistance.

Thursday, January 26, 2023 at 8:30am

At this hybrid event, Acton-area employers learned about the existing resources here in the Commonwealth of MA. No need to struggle alone on hiring and training. Need help with hiring? Watch the replay and connect with Acton's Economic Development Office and your local MassHire to develop a plan of action for your company. 

Workforce Solutions January workshop

Full Workshop Replay:

MassHire workshop Jan 2023 screen shot


Celebrating a successful Acton Business Tour!

On Tuesday February 7, 2023, the Acton Economic Development Department hosted and led the Acton Business Tour supported by MAPC. Town staff and elected officials toured the Town together to experience the various villages and nodes that make up our Town. Along the way we had four stops at four different businesses. At each stop, a different group of business owners and non profit leaders met us to share their experiences with operating in Town. The feedback received will be incorporated into a future, Doing Business in Acton Guide.

MAPC biz guide

Acton Business Leader's Brunch:

First Annual Celebration of the Acton Business Community

Wednesday, December 14, 2022 10am

This year's theme was Longevity Milestones

Congratulations to all of our honorees!

Over 80 years of business:

  • Acton Monument Company
  • Baker-Whitney Oil
  • Bursaw Gas & Oil
  • Curcurbit Farm
  • Erikson Grain Mill
  • Gallant Insurance Company
  • Haartz Corporation
  • John Palmer Moving Company

Between 60-80 years of business:

  • Acton Co-Op School
  • Acton Funeral Home
  • Acton Medical Associates
  • Ace Hardware
  • Donelan's Fresh Market
  • Gould's Clothing
  • Joseph Perry Plumbing
  • Leo Cavelier Metal Working & Welding
  • Middlesex Savings Bank
  • Palmer Kennels
  • RH Adhesives
  • Siesta Sleepworks

Between 40-60 years of business:

  • AB United Way
  • As You Like It Hair Salon
  • Discovery Museum
  • Idylwilde Farms
  • Infant Toddler Children's Center
  • Pedal Power Bike & Ski
  • Powers Gallery
  • Sal's Auto & Truck Repair
  • Sawyer Automotive

Between 20-40 years of business:

  • Acton Food Pantry
  • Acton Pharmacy
  • Bagels Plus
  • Commonwealth Ballet Company
  • Generations Law Group
  • Hansen Autobody
  • Scheier, Katin & Epstein
  • The Paper Store

Between 10-20 years of business:

  • ActonTV
  • Bee's KNees British Imports
  • Boston Bijoux Jewelers
  • Dunkin'
  • Enterprise Bank
  • Kitchen Outfitters
  • New Habitat Partners
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Small Business Saturday in Acton

Small Business Saturday is Saturday, November 26, 2022. 

What is Small Business Saturday? This is a national initiative that exists to encourage people to shop small and shop local that began in 2010.  Here in Acton, this is the first year that the Economic Development Office is celebrating it!

We are so proud of all the companies here in Acton!

To learn more, check out the Find the Deals Map, The Directory booklet or the listing below! Shop Small & Shop local this holiday season and everyday. Some retailers are extending their promotions beyond Small Business Saturday. Thank you!

Find the Deals Map 2022

Small Business Saturday 2022 Directory


SHOP LOCAL SMALL BUSINESS SATURDAY ACTON - yard sign 3

Alphabetical list of our participating retailers:

  1. 1 on 1 Self Indulgence Spa
  2. AB PIP STEM
  3. Acton Bowladrome
  4. Acton Fine Rugs
  5. Ace Hardware Acton
  6. Acton Pharmacy
  7. Acton Vacuum & Appliance
  8. Ames Art Studio & Gallery
  9. Anita's Shoe Boutique
  10. Anytime Fitness - Powdermill Road
  11. As You Like It Hair Salon
  12. Big Foot Moving & Storage
  13. Blush Tan Acton
  14. Boston Bijoux Jewelry
  15. Circle Furniture
  16. Colonial Spirits
  17. Commonwealth Ballet Company
  18. Densen Design
  19. DeVita Chiropractic
  20. Eve and Murray's Farm to Table
  21. Forest Vibe Photography
  22. Gift Boxes by Beth's Party Prep
  23. Gould's Fine Clothing
  24. Great Road Vintage
  25. Great Spaces
  26. Hammer and Stain (opening soon - stay tuned for their Grand Opening on December 1st!)
  27. Handworks Gallery
  28. Hit the Net Sports
  29. HOME by Stamm and Black
  30. Jazzercise Acton
  31. Jo Karen Fine Lingerie & Activewear
  32. John Palmer Moving & Storage
  33. King's Ink
  34. Kitchen Outfitters
  35. Learning Express Acton
  36. Live4PT
  37. Lyla Beauty Bar
  38. Magenta Dance Place
  39. Mood Chartreuse
  40. Optimal Health
  41. Pattern Review
  42. Pedal Power Bike & Ski
  43. Penguin Coding School
  44. Powdermill Crossfit
  45. Q Cleaner & Tailor
  46. Revolution Yoga
  47. RF's Workshop
  48. RH Adhesives
  49. Saplings Consulting
  50. Siesta Sleepworks
  51. Silver Unicorn Bookstore
  52. Smudge Ink
  53. SquashWest
  54. Stamm and Black Interior Design
  55. The Art Project (opening soon - stay tuned for their Grand Opening!) 
  56. The Bee's Knees British Imports
  57. The Fish Nook Pet Center
  58. The Paper Store
  59. The Sea and Me
  60. The UPS Store
  61. Unique Nails
  62. Village Cleaners
  63. Wish K&D

ABUW holiday graphic

Youth Manufacturing Day 2022

Special thank you to our event sponsor, Associated Environmental Systems, our participating organizations and media partner, ActonTV.

Thank you to AES, Haartz, NAA, Spark Photonics, Insulet, AB Pip Stem and ActonTV!

Youth Manufacturing Day Flyer with Participating Orgs final.2 

****THANK YOU! What a fun and successful event!****

KCBP icon final

THANK YOU 

to all the Kelley’s Corner Block Party Sponsors & Supporters!

At this fun, free community event we had a live band, magician, bubble party, face painting, henna, crafts, raffle, photographer, games, bike safety & e-bike clinic, drones over Kelley's Corner, and a food drive to support the Community pantry bin inside Roche Bros & support Acton Food Pantry. 

View the event program here

Sponsor logos for Kelley's Corner Block Party

Want to see the plans for Kelley's Corner? Click here.

Tips to Green Your Biz

Hear from Acton's Sustainability Director, Andrea Becerra, Acton's Economic Development Director, Julie Pierce Onos and Acton's Transportation and Mobility Fellow, Degen Larkin as they talk about ways Acton's businesses can become more green. Click below:

Sustainability Director Opens in new window

Grants & Technical Assistance Awarded for the Acton, MA Business Community and Visual Artists

Icon for the Acton Public Art program

Public Art in Acton, MA– Boosting the Creative Economy

The Creative Economy is an important part of our economic and social well-being and we want to both support working artists in our community and add more public art to our streetscapes for all to enjoy. We are proud of the working artists and artisans in the Acton community. For this specific call for art we commissioned murals and benches. Commissioned mural artists are: Meg Nichols, Elizabeth Bejar-Benz, Elizabeth Ames & Shara Osgood. Commissioned bench artists are: Yin Peet, Pam Tobbler & Sunanda Sahay.  

Read the press release here

The first community mural is going into Kelley's Corner on Main Street! Check out the progress and let us know what you think!

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Acton Business Incubator

We are proud of the Acton business community and our goal is to help the businesses who are here to stay and thrive while also attracting new businesses. The business community provides products and services to our Town and a livelihood for the business owners and their employees. This year we started our inaugural Acton, MA Business Incubator where the business owners receive micro-grants and technical information. 

Business Awardees in alphabetical order are: 

  • Abode to Adore LLC 
  • Acanthi
  • Ames Art Studio & Gallery
  • Anita's Shoe Boutique
  • Charlie Media
  • Cooperative Elder Services
  • Eve & Murray’s Farm to Home 
  • Green Home Solutions 
  • Handworks Gallery
  • Live 4 Physical Therapy & Wellness Advising 
  • Penguin Coding School
  • Q Cleaner & Tailor
  • RF’s Workshop LLC 
  • Sal’s Auto
  • SquashWest Sports & Fitness
  • TensorDock
  • Wicked Good Henna

The entire business community was invited to attend a three-part webinar series, free of charge, regardless of if they were selected for a grant award or not where they learned about the best practices in communication for reaching customers, networking with peers and securing funding. 

Read the press release here

Acton Business Incubator Icon 2

Sign up for Acton's Business Boost!

Sign up to receive the Acton MA Business Boost: An Economic Development Newsletter. Each issue will spotlight new happenings with local businesses and organizations as well as resources and events that may be of interest. Connect with us and stay up to date! Sign up here

Acton Business Boost screenshot

Check out the Business Boost Archives!

Overview

The Town of Acton is business-friendly and our economic development initiatives are designed to create and stimulate an environment in which businesses succeed.  We are here to serve as a conduit for this work.  Thinking of starting a business or have ideas to maintain or grown your existing company? Call or send a message today!

Acton Community Movie

The Town of Acton supports our local business community in creative and innovative ways.  The Town collaborated with CGI Communications to help businesses market themselves and reach potential customers while also showcasing all the great things about our community.  Check out the video shorts here.

Acton Movie screen shot

Economic Development Initiatives

In 2021, the Town of Acton released a report about how the town can be part of the Commonwealth's Local Rapid Recovery Planning initiatives. View the Great Road Corridor Revitalization Local Rapid Recovery Plan Report here to view a wealth of information including data and presentations shared during the public hearing phase of developing the plan, diagnostic key findings and recommendations.  The Commonwealth's Recovery Program was developed to help individual towns develop project-based recovery plans by providing technical support and guidance from Subject Matter Experts (SMEs) and Plan Facilitators to assist in the development of customized plans. It also provided a research-based diagnostic framework to assist all stakeholders in understanding the unique economic challenges within their own municipalities covering four major areas: the customer base, the physical environment, the business environment and the administrative capacity that exists.

As a result of study and analysis in Acton, eleven projects were recommended that range from way finding signage, expansion of the municipal sewer system, shared marketing and collaborations among business owners, and improved pedestrian and bicycle access along the Great Road Corridor in Acton.  All proposed projects are targeted towards improving consumers' ease of access, improving visitors' experience, and increasing businesses' capacity to reach and interact with their clients. 

The key takeaway of the report is that in Acton, a "full recovery will depend on a mix of private and public realm projects." The proposed projects involve sufficient public-private partnerships and room for feedback from residents, consumers and business owners so that by following the key performance indicators and timeframes, the completed projects improve the economic sustainability of our Town.

Happening Around Town

If you have any programs or events related to building collaboration among business owners, residents and the Town, please feel free to share.  Our Town has a number of ways to collaborate and interact with others. Additionally there are some upcoming changes in our Town that may be of interest to businesses and residents as well.  A few programs and associations are highlighted here:

Acton Supports It's Local Businesses!

Acton is a business-friendly community, with a recent history of approving tax incentives for companies moving into Town. Associated Environmental Systems was granted a Special Tax Assessment to relocate from Ayer to Acton, doubling its workforce in the process.  Acton taxpayers granted a generous Tax Increment Financing deal to Insulet Corporation, enabling the medical device company to build a global headquarters and manufacturing facility for its Omnipod insulin delivery device. These companies, along with Haartz Corporation, are working with the Town and MassHire to create the Middlesex County Manufacturing Collaborative to match job seekers with the training necessary to become valuable manufacturing employees. Acton is a leader in the region.

In September 2020, Acton voters approved funding for a small business grant program for those negatively impacted by COVID-19.  The grant program was supposed to be funded by CARES Act funding, but the MA Department of Revenue prevented this.  Acton voters stepped up to use more than $165,000 in free cash to fund the small business grant program. This program helped over 40 businesses which was significantly impactful to keeping these businesses afloat. 

Small Biz Grant Video


Trying is Believing Business Showcase

Westside
silverunicorn
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kitchenoutfit

Economic Development Department in the News

Town of Acton and Community Partners Offer Pop-Up Retail Space to Emerging Enterprises

This article discusses how the Town of Acton Economic Development Department, in collaboration with the 495/MetroWest Partnership and UpNext, is offering pop-up retail space to emerging businesses on Massachusetts Avenue in West Acton


Town of Acton Community Partners Offering Presentation on Tenant Rights and Protections

This article discusses how the Regional Housing Services Office (RHSO) and MetroWest Legal Services in Framingham will offer a 90-minute virtual presentation on tenant rights and protections.


Town of Acton Receives Award for Outstanding Achievement in Popular Annual Financial Reporting

This article discusses how the town has received an award for Outstanding Achievement in Popular Annual Financial Reporting (PAFR) from the Government Finance Officers Association (GFOA) for the 2021 Report.


Town of Acton to Launch New Grant Program to Help Install Energy Efficiency Upgrades

This article shares that the Town of Acton will launch a new grant program to help Acton businesses and multi-family property owners install energy efficiency upgrades


Town of Acton to Launch Emergency Assistance Program

This article discusses the launch of the Acton Emergency Assistance Program.


Town of Acton Encourages Community to Shop Local on Small Business Saturday

This article discusses the Town’s first Small Business Saturday event on Nov. 26.


Acton Economic Development Office Invites Community to Kelley’s Corner Block Party

This article invites the community to Kelley's Corner Block Party hosted by Acton's Economic Development Office


Towns of Acton, Boxboro, Littleton, Maynard, and Westford Share Success of Regional Grant Initiative

This article discusses the success of regional initiatives designed to support businesses, families, and food pantries affected by the COVID-19 pandemic.


Acton Economic Development Department Hosts Three-Part Seminar for Local Businesses

This article shares that the Economic Development Department will be hosting an interactive, three-part seminar for local businesses.


Acton Economic Development Department Hosts Professional Development Webinar for Local Artists

This article shares that the Economic Development Office will be hosting a free webinar for working artists in collaboration with the 495 MetroWest Partnership.


Town of Acton Announces New Child Care Subsidy Program for Families

This article discusses how the Town of Acton has dedicated $40,000 from American Rescue Plan Act (ARPA) funding to offer a new child care subsidy program


Town of Acton Awarded $78,000 Travel and Tourism Recovery Grant

This article discusses how The Town of Acton has been awarded a grant from the state as a part of the Fiscal Year 2022 Travel and Tourism Recovery Grant Program.


Town of Acton Invites the Manufacturing Community to 2022 Spring Manufacturing Summit on Workforce Challenges

This article invites the manufacturing community to the 2022 Spring Manufacturing Summit about current workforce challenges.


Town of Acton Shares Resources for Renters

This article shares resources for renters that need assistance with housing-related issues


Town of Acton Awarded Certificate of Achievement for Excellence in Financial Reporting

This article discusses how the Town of Acton has been awarded the Certificate of Achievement for Excellence in Financial Reporting by the Government Finance Officers Association (GFOA) for its fiscal year 2020 Comprehensive Annual Financial Report (CAFR).


Town of Acton Offers Rental Assistance for Residents Impacted by Pandemic

This article provides information on a new rental assistance program available for Acton residents who have been adversely impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic


Town of Acton Receives State Grant to Support Affordable Housing Projects

This article discusses how The Town of Acton was awarded a $233,819 grant from the state Housing Choice Community Program to support infrastructure improvements to create affordable housing stock.


Town of Acton Receives State Grant to Plan Assistance Along Great Road Commercial Corridor

This article discusses how The Town of Acton has received a $60,000 grant from the state Department of Housing and Community Development to address pandemic-related challenges among businesses in the Great Road Commercial Corridor


Town of Acton Receives Massachusetts Municipal Association’s Innovation Award for Work Supporting Businesses Throughout COVID-19

This article shares how the Town of Acton has received a municipal innovation award for its ongoing work to support local businesses during the COVID-19 pandemic.


Town of Acton Provides Information on Emergency Rental Assistance Program

This article discusses a rental assistance program available for Acton residents impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic.


Town of Acton Residents Vote to Support COVID Small Business Grant Program

This article shares that residents of the Town of Acton voted in support of a COVID Small Business Grant Program.


Town of Acton Announces COVID-19 Small Business Grant Program

This article shares how a COVID-19 Small Business Grant Program is available to help local businesses impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic