Main Street Content Community Blog

Main Street Blog

July 27, 2017 | National Main Street Center | Staff Spotlight | Katharine Hannaford recently joined the National Main Street Center team as the new Development Assistant in advance of Jodie Hiveley’s upcoming maternity leave. We look forward to having Katharine with us through the end of 2017! To learn more about Katharine check out her staff bio , or scroll down for a fun Staff Spotlight! Staff Spotlight: Katharine Hannaford Where are you from and where do you live now? I was born in Chicago, and currently live in Chicago. However, I went to college in Connecticut and have spent time living overseas, in Italy, Spain and Scotland. ...
0 comments
July 27, 2017 | MAIN STREET AMERICA INSTITUTE | Main Street America Institute curriculum is designed with your needs in mind. Our online courses, led by subject-area experts with on-the-ground experience, are offered in a flexible format with immediate applicability for your community. Advanced Fundamentals of Sustainable Organization II (August 8-22) Build skills to help your organization thrive, including: Creating an inclusive culture by understanding changing demographics and building relationships.   Developing a communications strategy, from identifying audiences to measuring impact. Envisioning and implementing a brand strategy ...
0 comments
July 25, 2017 |  John Leith-Tetrault, Public Policy Advisor, National Trust Community Investment Corporation | Main Spotlight Feature Article | Ellicott City Flood Recovery | The historic structures requiring stabilization -- they are missing the supporting wall and load bearing columns. Credit: Preservation Maryland / Flickr CC BY-NC-SA 2.0 Both Houses of Congress have promised to produce draft legislation to overhaul the federal tax code in September 2017. On the table for possible elimination is the federal historic tax credit (HTC). As one strategy to meet this threat, legislators in both houses have introduced legislation, ...
0 comments
July 21, 2017 | National Main Street Center | Community Spotlight Photo credit: Karen Dye Newkirk , a small rural community in northern Oklahoma, joined the Oklahoma Main Street program back in 1992. Karen Dye, Newkirk Main Street's program manager, was inspired to “make downtown more fun and festive” with painted water meter covers after learning about the practice at a recent Main Street Now conference. Pictured above are design committee members Amy Lusk and Carolyn Kahle. Learn more about Newkirk . Have a photo you want to share? Email us at mainstreetnews@savingplaces.org
0 comments
July 19, 2017 | Main Street America Institute | 2017 COMMUNITY TRANSFORMATION WORKSHOP Join colleagues from across the country for this three-day interactive, intensive learning experience November 15 - 17, 2017. Strategic leadership of Main Street organizations requires in-depth knowledge of economic development tools and their implementation. One of the premier onsite learning experiences offered through the Main Street America Institute, the Community Transformation Workshop immerses downtown and commercial district leaders in the strategies, metrics, and applications of the refreshed Main Street Approach. Led by expert instructors from the ...
0 comments
July 18, 2017 | Dr. Ron Cook, distrx | Main Spotlight Feature Article |   For as long as man has walked the planet, we have continued to evolve. Through his research, Charles Darwin demonstrated what we all now know is a simple, logical principle. Whether we call it “natural selection” or “survival of the fittest,” one thing is certain: in order to survive and flourish, we must evolve and adapt. How has your Main Street evolved over the past several years?  How will it evolve and grow in the years ahead? Welcome to the digital age. Fortunately, over the past decade we have seen a more positive trend for Main Street America and a continuing revival ...
0 comments
July 14, 2017 | National Main Street Center | Community Spotlight | Photo credit: Patrice Frey Ridgefield Main Street is an energetic, up-and-coming Washington Main Street program located just north of Vancouver, Wash. Patrice Frey, NMSC President & CEO, snapped this photo of Frank Shuman, Board Secretary, Ridgefield Mayor Ron Onslow and Stan Okinaka, of the City Planning Commission, on a recent visit. Learn more at ridgefieldmainstreet.com .
0 comments
July 14, 2017 | National Main Street Center | Earlier this week, we launched the new mainstreet.org . Our new site celebrates the energy and innovation of the Main Street America network in a fresh, user-friendly format that makes it easier than ever to find the solutions you need. Images are larger, content is mobile-optimized, and the branding is carried out across the entire site, helping to enhance the visibility of our collective work and brand.   We are particularly excited to debut the new member resource library , where you’ll easily be able to locate all our webinars, resources and publications including the Main Street handbooks, Main Street ...
0 comments
July 14, 2017 | National Main Street Center | Thanks to generous support from Edward Jones , the 10 selected Main Street America organizations will receive a $2,500 matching grant toward the implementation of “lighter, quicker, cheaper” placemaking projects. Participants in this program will be connected to the crowdfunding experts at ioby , who will share training materials and deliver customized one-on-one fundraising support. While fundr aising on ioby, donations to their campaigns will be doubled in real time, until the $2,500 cap in match funding is met. Peruse the projects, donate if you’d like, and most importantly, get inspired by these ...
0 comments
July 10, 2017 | Patrice Frey , President & CEO, National Main Street Center | Patrice tours Downtown Howell, Michigan, with Howell Main Street Executive Director Cathleen Edgerly, staff, and Howell Mayor Proctor. Lately, I’ve come across a few things — a podcast , a magazine article , and a series on a blog — that has me reflecting on a fundamental aspect of our work at Main Street: the power of small steps . When you think about it, the promise of the Main Street Approach is pretty audacious: sustainable, comprehensive transformation of a downtown or commercial district. But, the mechanism for achieving that change is quite simple. A series ...
0 comments
By Michigan Main Street Center | From Main Street Story of the Week | July 5, 2017 | In our last article — Michigan Main Street Refresh Implementation: Our Process and Lessons Learned So Far — we introduced the process we developed to implement the refreshed Main Street Approach in Michigan Main Street communities, as well as the lessons we learned as the first state-wide coordinating program to roll out the new approach in all 21 of our participating communities. We are still in the midst of taking our communities through our three-step Refresh Implementation Process and continue to see success in the way the refreshed Main Street Approach is being ...
0 comments
By National Main Street Center | From Main Street Story of the Week | June 16, 2017 | At last month’s annual Main Street Now Conference in Pittsburgh, we announced that the national network of over 1,000 Main Street America programs reached a ten-year high for community reinvestment. In 2016, these communities reinvested $5.75 billion from public and private sources, created 5,498 new businesses, 26,909 new jobs and rehabilitated 7,794 buildings. “Despite some media reports about the demise of Main Streets, many local business districts are thriving as a result of sound economic planning and community engagement,” said Patrice Frey, president ...
0 comments
By National Main Street Center | From Main Street Story of the Week | June 2, 2017 | Congratulations to all 828 Main Street America™ communities that earned national accreditation this year! The Main Street America accreditation process evaluates local Main Street programs according to 10 performance standards and provides national recognition to those that meet these standards. We also congratulate the 256 Main Street America communities that earned official Affiliate status . Check out an interactive map of the 2017 Main Street America communities and Coordinating Program
0 comments
Appealing to mobility-challenged shoppers yields benefits beyond the store By Lisa Henthorn, Marketing Director, Inclusion Solutions | From Main Street Story of the Week | May 12, 2017 | Photo credit: Inclusion Solutions What is storefront “accessibility,” exactly? Far too often, businesses either confuse the need for accessibility with ADA compliance or lump accessibility into a “social services” category, when in fact creating accessibility is so much more complex. The Foodies Started It According to the U.S. Small Business Administration, the number of small businesses in America has increased by 49% over the course of the ...
0 comments
​ The National Main Street Center is pleased to announce recipients of the 2017 Main Street America Excellence Awards ! All three awards— Innovation on Main Street Award, Business Leadership Award , and Main Street Hero Award —were presented as part of the Main Street Now Conference in Pittsburgh, Pa., on May 3, and were generously sponsored by Edward Jones . Innovation on Main Street Award Texas Main Street Program, Celebrate Main Street project Gulfport Main Street Association, Fishbone Alley “Urban Living Room” project Business Leadership Award Buster's Main Street Café, Cottage Grove, Oregon Main Street Hero Award Michigan ...
0 comments
​ By National Main Street Center | From Main Street Story of the Week |  May 1, 2017  | The National Main Street Center, Inc. announced Renaissance Covington , Oretha Castle Haley Boulevard Merchants and Business Association , and West Chester Business Improvement District , as the three winners of the 2017 Great American Main Street Award (GAMSA) during its annual conference in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. The awards were made possible through support from PNC Bank. “The 2017 GAMSA winners showcase the realized potential of commercial district revitalization,” said Patrice Frey, president and CEO of the National Main Street Center. ...
0 comments
​ As many of you saw last week, The New York Times Sunday Review ran an opinion piece by economist Louis Hyman, The Myth of Main Street. Mr. Hyman presents a bleak choice for Main Street America: persist in hopeless efforts to rebuild your downtown or graciously accept a future of telecommuting for a distant corporation. We know, of course, that this is a false choice. The National Main Street Center and the Brookings Institution have jointly authored a response to Mr. Hyman’s piece, The Reality of Main Street , that is featured on Brookings’ blog . We encourage you to check it out, keep up the dialogue, and continue to share with us just ...
0 comments
By Michigan Main Street Center | From Main Street Story of the Week |  April 27, 2017  |                                 Community Strategy Identification Session, Downtown Charlotte ( photo credit: Windwalker Underground Gallery ) By now you know that Michigan Main Street is the first coordinating program to roll-out the refreshed Main Street Approach in all 21 of our Select and Master Level communities across the state. We began this process in the Spring of 2016 when we chose one Select Level and two Master Level communities—Saline, Boyne City and Grand Haven—to pilot the implementation of the new Main Street Approach. We learned ...
0 comments
​ By Bill Fontana, Executive Director, Pennsylvania Downtown Center | From Main Street Story of the Week |  April 21, 2017  | Very shortly, many of you will be making the trek to my hometown, Pittsburgh, for the 2017 Main Street Now Conference . If you have been keeping up with the “Stories of the Week,” you should already have a pretty good idea that you are going to see a city far different from the steel town heritage that the people here so proudly celebrate. It is a city that, to borrow a phrase from the “Refreshed Main Street Approach,” has truly transformed itself. To help those of you making your first trip to “the ‘Burgh,” ...
0 comments
​ View the original posting on the Brooking Institution's blog .  By Bruce Katz and Patrice Frey April 20, 2017 Louis Hyman’s recent piece in The New York Times Sunday Review , The Myth of Main Street , presents a bleak choice for rural and rust-belt America: persist in hopeless efforts to rebuild your downtown or graciously accept a future of telecommuting for a distant corporation. The former he decries as nostalgia; the latter as the only economically viable option. But this offer is a false choice: there is another way for smaller communities to compete in today’s economy and we believe a strong main street strategy is at the heart of it. ...
0 comments