Youngstown CityScape recognizes foundation’s hard work reviving downtown

Youngstown CityScape's focus is on the future -- the build-up and clean-up of the city through upcoming projects

YOUNGSTOWN, Ohio (WYTV) – Youngstown CityScape held its annual Grassroots Gala Wednesday night, giving an award to one group in particular that has put over $200 million into the community over the years.

Organizations from all over the city came to Stambaugh Auditorium for the Grassroots Gala, which recognizes groups of people who stand out in the reviving of downtown Youngstown. This is the ninth gala the organization has hosted.

“We have had this very long relationship with a tremendous organization that, really, is a gift to our entire community,” said CityScape Executive Director Sharon Letson.

This year’s honoree was the Youngstown Foundation.

“We were very surprised. We do this because it’s our mission and we want to help the community,” said Youngstown Foundation Executive Director Jan Strasfeld.

Strasfeld said the work the foundation does fits perfectly with the mission of CityScape.

It just happens to be the Youngstown Foundation’s 100th anniversary year, making it one of the oldest community foundations in the country.

“Throughout the year, we’ll be making some announcements of some big projects and programs, and we kicked it off with a $3 million gift to help build the new amphitheater,” Strasfeld said.

On top of giving out the award, CityScape’s focus is on the future — the build-up and clean-up of the city through upcoming projects.

As for what’s to come from both CityScape and the Youngstown Foundation, both Letson and Strasfeld said this is just the beginning.

“Gearing up right now for our Streetscape event, the community comes and helps us to beautify downtown Youngstown,” Letson said.

You can sign up to volunteer for Youngstown CityScape’s upcoming events on the organization’s website.