As community groups go, it seems Newbold Neighbors Association has all the fun ideas. Their biggest fundraiser every year takes place in the form of a neighborhood beer tour. Last spring, they added a wine tour to the docket. Count us in.

The source of the Newbold name

NNA's latest and greatest idea has a decidedly less boozy theme, but could have major implications for the neighborhood's improvement in the years to come. A few weeks back, the group announced a microgrant program designed to fund plans to improve the community. The group is currently taking applications for $500 grants for anything that people can imagine to "make the neighborhood a better place." Can we get some other community groups in on this idea?

The application demands that people really think through their proposals. Applicants must live within the group's boundaries, which go from Broad Street to 18th Street, Washington Avenue to Passyunk Avenue. The projects, which must be for public consumption, also need to occur within those boundaries. The preference is that the funding goes toward materials rather than labor. Also, the group is seeking projects that fulfill at least one, and ideally multiple goals of the organization, including "improve public safety, beautify the neighborhood, support sustainable development, promote local businesses, provide greener streets, help reach new residents, and foster smart planning and zoning."

What would you do with $500 to improve this community? What would you with $500 to improve your own neighborhood?