Great American Main Street Awards®


Great American Main Street Awards®

The 2016 Great American Main Street Award application is now closed.  The applications will be reviewed by the jury and we will annouce this years Semi-Finalists in September.

This year's winners will be announced at the 2016 Opening Plenary in Milwaukee, Wisc. on Monday, May 23.

Please email or contact Steve Amraen, the Associate Manager of Network Services at 312-610-5609 with any questions.

Eligibility to Apply

The Great American Main Street Awards® competition is open to all Nationally Accredited Main Street Programs. At this time, previous winners are ineligible to apply for GAMSA.  

Application Process & Tips for Applying

Selection Process

All applications submitted by the deadline are reviewed and scored by a jury of representatives from community revitalization, economic development, and historic preservation fields.  Applications are scored based on the criteria below. You can expect an official notification via email in mid-October on the status of your application.

Application Criteria

  • Overall strength of the Main Street in creating an exciting place to live, work, play and visit;
  • Demonstrated success of the Four-Point Approach in your community, with a focus on economic impacts;
  • Commitment to historic preservation;
  • Active involvement of Public and Private sector;
  • Model Partnerships–Participation of multiple groups, entities and individuals who have been involved in making Main Street a great place.


Click here to view some frequently asked questions, and be sure to check out our free webinar: The Great American Main Street Awards: An Insider's Guide to Applying for and Winning GAMSA for some great tips. If you have other questions please don't hesitate to contact us.

Recognition of Winners

Winners of the Great American Main Street Awards® will be officially honored at the awards ceremony in May at the National Main Streets Conference in Milwaukee. The awards ceremony will feature the winners' achievements, as well as presentation of the award.

The National Main Street Center will distribute press releases announcing the award winners to local and national media. Winning communities will also be featured on and in other media.

Great American Main Street Awards® communities also receive a plaque marking their achievement.

Previous Winners

Aside from a hiatus in 2007-2008, the Great American Main Street Awards have been given out since 1995. check all of the previous winners.