CAVE CITY, Ark., Jan. 29, 2015 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- Professional dancer Crystal Pickering never planned to open her own dance studio. Then the Texas native, whose 28-year career includes Broadway performances, moved to her husband's hometown of Cave City, Arkansas. She got so many requests to start a studio that finally she said yes. This month, 4-year-old KC Dance Dynamics takes the next step by purchasing and renovating its own building.
The project is underwritten by an Economic Development Program (EDP) advance and EDPPlus grant from the Bank of Cave City and the Federal Home Loan Bank of Dallas (FHLB Dallas).
"We wouldn't have been able to get the building without the EDP advance and EDPPlus grant," said Ms. Pickering. The $15,450 EDPPlus grant is being used for the "subflooring that's required in a dance studio. We are also using it for stereo equipment, mirrors, and computer software."
Ms. Pickering said she chose the Bank of Cave City because of her trust in John Beller, the bank's president. "His daughter is one of my dancers, so I know him very well. When we had this opportunity with the building, I thought of him and the Bank of Cave City and they have been just great helping us."
Noncompetitive EDPPlus grants are awarded in conjunction with EDP advances through FHLB Dallas members, like the Bank of Cave City. The grants are available on a first-come, first-served basis to promote and enhance small-business development and job creation.
Through September 2014, FHLB Dallas awarded more than $916,000 in EDPPlus grants to 44 small businesses through its member institutions. In 2015, the Bank has made $1 million available for EDPPlus grants.
"The studio has really been a terrific asset for our town. The Bank of Cave City was pleased to be able to help make this happen," said John Beller, president of the Bank of Cave City. "KC Dance Dynamics currently has four employees and dozens of students. It's a hometown investment that benefits everyone."
Cave City is a town of 1,900 residents, located 110 miles northeast of Little Rock, the state capital.
"People might think because it's a small town that we wouldn't have top-notch dancers. But we have a national, award-winning dance team," said Ms. Pickering. She noted that her students range in age from 2 years to 64 years young.
Requirements of the EDPPlus grant program led Ms. Pickering to the Arkansas State University Small Business Development Center and its executive director, Laura Miller.
"We assisted by reviewing her business plan, providing market research, and helping with financials," Ms. Miller said. "She'd already successfully launched her business, so our support reflected that. We helped her prepare documents for the lender."
Ms. Pickering knows first-hand the value dance has in giving direction to young lives.
"With my connections in the industry, I want to be able to help my kids who continue in dance get scholarships and opportunities they might not have had, like dancing in shows on cruise ships or at Disney. I was incredibly fortunate in this way, and I want to help the next generation of dancers to go as far as they can."
Greg Hettrick, vice president and director of Community Investment at FHLB Dallas, noted the value of the EDP. "The EDP advance is a competitively priced loan that allows small business owners to take their business investments to the next level. The related EDPPlus grant is an instant equity boost for small business owners. It's a win-win for small business and our members, who can offer what other institutions typically cannot."
About the Bank of Cave City
The Bank of Cave City is a community bank serving North Arkansas with locations in Cave City, Evening Shade, Lynn, and Strawberry. Chartered in 1906, the company remains committed to offering and delivering a mutually profitable banking experience to its neighbors every day. The bank may be contacted at 870.283.5301 or P.O. Box 490, Cave City, Arkansas 72521. The bank's web address is www.bankofcavecity.com.
About the Federal Home Loan Bank of Dallas
The Federal Home Loan Bank of Dallas is one of 12 district banks in the FHLBank System, created by Congress in 1932. FHLB Dallas, with total assets of $37.5 billion as of September 30, 2014, is a member-owned cooperative that supports housing and community development by providing competitively priced loans and other credit products to approximately 900 members and associated institutions in Arkansas, Louisiana, Mississippi, New Mexico, and Texas.
Federal Home Loan Bank of Dallas
SOURCE Federal Home Loan Bank of Dallas