McGregor Lakes Area Foundation (MLAF) is granting $16,230 to McGregor community organizations in 2022. MLAF issued the largest amount of grant dollars in one year, since its inception in 1992.

  • The Long Lake Conservation Center will be replacing old equipment for their very popular outdoor winter program of snow shoeing and cross-country skiing
  • McGregor ANGELS conducts a program entitled Area Neighbors Giving Elderly Live-In Services. The grant to McGregor ANGELS helps offer assistance to seniors age 60 and over, who are at risk of losing independence to live safely in their homes
  • McGregor School District received 2 grants, one for the Big Sandy Water Institute and the other, a sixth-grade field trip to the MDNR Soudan Mine
  • McGregor Food Shelf will purchase food for its clients. The McGregor Food Shelf grant will help provide nutritional support for up to 300 individuals a month
  • McGregor Library will conduct reading time for children with volunteer readers
  • Riverwood McGregor Clinic will purchase books for the Riverwood Reads Program, which gives a book to children 0-8 years at their well-child checkup visits

Checks to these community organizations were presented on January 3, 2023. This year’s McGregor Lakes Area Foundation funding brings the total support for McGregor area community organizations to over $120,000 since the first grants in 2000. The foundation’s mission is to support the greater McGregor lakes area through ongoing education and annual grants to non-profit organizations that focus on ecological, educational, environmental, and social areas.  Grants are provided to organizations that demonstrate a clear commitment to the sustainability and long-term viability of the McGregor area.

The Foundation was formed in 1992 as the Big Sandy Lake Foundation.  In 2016, the foundation’s name was changed to the McGregor Lakes Area Foundation to reflect the foundation’s mission of supporting community-wide organizations. MLAF funds are invested and managed by the Grand Rapids Area Community Foundation.

The MLAF holds an annual event/fundraiser each August to promote the work of the organization and connect community members interested in learning more about MLAF’s mission and goals. This year’s very successful event was graciously hosted by The Craft House on Lake Minnewawa.   Sponsors were Willey’s Marine and Floe International.  The MLAF Advisory Committee used a direct mail campaign, partner newsletters, personal contact with donors, and Facebook posts to reach their financial goals. Community members and businesses were very generous donors during these challenging times enabling the foundation to reach its goals for the year. A successful launch of the McGregor Lakes Area Foundation web site at helps to spread the word about the foundation’s history of contributions to the McGregor lakes area.   The website includes a Give Now button that links you to Grand Rapids Community Foundation, our fiscal agent.

The McGregor Lakes Area Foundation also has an endowment fund that allows continuous growth to ensure donations to it can provide benefits in perpetuity. In partnership with individuals, families, businesses, and charitable organizations endowment donations ensure that area lakes, land, and way of life will be enjoyed for generations to come. Please contact the MLAF if you’d like to learn more, or if you have questions about a charitable tax-deductible gift. You can also make your gift directly via the Grand Rapids Community Foundation (https:// by clicking on the “Donate Now” button and then click on “Donate to a Fund” to search for “McGregor Lakes Area Foundation”.

Anyone interested in joining the MLAF Advisory Committee, please contact any of the members. Current Advisory Committee members are Curt Sparks, Chairperson (612-616-6438), Katie Nelson, Vice Chairperson, (218-349-7250), and Gary Anderson, Treasurer (612-961-6774).

McGregor Lakes Area Foundation operates under the umbrella of the Grand Rapids Area Community Foundation and accepts tax deductible donations from individuals, families, businesses, and charitable organizations.