- Omena’s Past
- OVPA Properties
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In 2019, OVPA. decided to reach out to members of the Omena community about what they saw as problems that OVPA should address. Residents, businesses, independent contractors and others who used the Post Office were canvassed by OVPA. They were asked to list problems/projects they felt were the most significant ones for OVPA to work on that summer.
The overwhelming response was that the Omena Post Office needed new, energy efficient, properly fitting windows to eliminate the cold winter drafts and the leaks that occurred, from the rotted, deteriorating windows. However, to maintain the look and integrity of this old building, the windows had to be custom-made, historic preservation windows.
It is a story of perseverance, tenacity, patience, and a greater understanding of windows than any one person, not in the construction business, would ever need to know!
There were interviews with different suppliers, builders, construction companies, and lead abatement companies. The project was estimated at over $40,000. The Board of OVPA determined that the funding needed to come from outside sources since we did not have the discretionary funds that would cover the project.
During the Summer of 2019, OVPA held a fundraiser called: TOOLS, JEWELS & MORE: THE ULTIMATE YARD SALE. It helped raise nearly $7,000 for the 2020 Historic Preservation Replacement Window Project. That was a great start, but we needed more funding.
And so, the process of grant writing was started in 2019. In the Fall of 2019, the Leelanau Township Community Foundation approved a grant request for $10,000. Over 15 grant requests were written. Finally, in the Summer of 2020, during the Covid Pandemic, $10,000 was approved for the project from The Les & Anne Biederman Foundation. We then asked the construction company, the window vendor and the lead abatement company to donate back a portion of their labor charges as a charitable donation.
Along with a donation by the Omena Women’s Club, we were most of the way towards our goal! The Board agreed to provide the final piece of the financial puzzle and provide the last piece of the funding package from the OVPA Treasury.
The work was finally started in the Summer of 2020 and completed by November 2020. This was a major undertaking for our non-profit. It consumed over 2 years of our time and efforts, but we were determined to maintain and preserve the Post Office.
All of this preceded the Dedication & Celebration event on July 9, 2021. OVPA chose to have that event the Summer following the November completion of the project to allow more of the summer residents, renters, and the community to share in the celebration reception on the patio of the Leelanau Wine Cellars across from the Omena Post Office. Leelanau Wine Cellars provided the wine and other liquid refreshments for the guests; while OVPA Board members provided the beautiful edible snacks.
Board Members and guests enjoying the Celebration Reception at the Leelanau Wine Cellars Patio after the Dedication Celebration ceremony.
With the help of these Foundations, Vendors (who donated back part of their labor costs), community-supported fundraisers and donations from other non-profits in Omena, the Omena Post Office Historic Window Replacement Project enabled OVPA to improve the appearance and structural integrity of this 1857 building.
It remains a charming and historic building but now it has better fitting windows that will ensure energy efficiency and better lighting.
Visit our Omena Post Office page to learn more about the post office past and present.
Below is a brief list of just some of the projects that the OVPA has completed for the Post Office since OVPA was established in 2002: