Dear Friends, August, 2016
We recently held a Town Hall meeting to share our progress with the stakeholders and citizens, and solicit input for our next steps and future direction. If you were able to attend that meeting, thank you for your time and comments.
The last few years were very successful for Downtown Alive! With your help, we were able to continue to improve the quality of downtown in the following ways:
- Several new businesses were welcomed to the district creating new jobs and opportunities.
- The beautification efforts continued with the addition of new benches, waste receptacles and custom made bicycle racks, fabricated and donated by The Bike Stop.
- Two new pieces of art were added to the Downtown landscape through the “Remnants Restored” Public Art Project in partnership with the Public Art Commission.
- A new brochure entitled “Doing Business in Downtown Blue Springs” was created in cooperation with the City, which highlights the incentive tools available for renovations and improvements.
- With input from Downtown Alive! and the Historic Preservation Commission, the City created three “Downtown Conservation Areas” to help preserve the historic character of our City.
- Our efforts were recognized by the Missouri Main Street Connection. They raised our status from Affiliate to Associate Level, an elevation that normally takes at least 8 years, completed in 4!
There are many tasks from our Action Plans either completed or in the process of being completed in 2016:
- Continue the beautification efforts by adding more benches and bicycle racks in Central Park.
- Installation of four murals designed and created by artists in the Blue Springs High Schools, to showcase our history and heritage. The murals were mounted on buildings within the district, and the project was partially funded with a grant from Truman Heartland Community Foundation.
- We received the “Creating Creative Places” Award for the “Remnants Restored” Public Art Project during the Annual Missouri Main Street Connection Evening of Excellence in July 2016.
- Continue to promote and educate the business and property owners about the various funding opportunities available for façade and building improvements.
Some of the goals discussed at the Town Hall meeting for 2017 and the future include:
- Establishing a Community Improvement District to provide a steady funding source.
- Attracting more retail to the district (Destination Business).
- Creating outdoor (green) gathering and meeting spaces.
We need the help of our “Friends of Downtown Alive!” to continue this progress. Please renew your Friend status for 2016 with a tax deductible contribution. Your donations can be mailed, made on our website by clicking on the “Donate” button on our homepage, or even better, bring them to our monthly “Friends” meeting and see what’s going on. The next Friends Social Hour is September 20th from 6:30 to 7:30 pm at Pizza Shoppe. We need you and your time! Please consider volunteering for one of the four teams or perhaps helping with a specific event. Take a look at our website for more information.
Thank you in advance for joining with us as we build upon our past successes and work toward making Downtown the social, civic and small business heart of Blue Springs!
The Board of Downtown Alive!
Just a reminder to please join us for our newest event, “Second Saturdays” right here in Downtown Blue Springs! This will be an ongoing event beginning this Saturday, August 13th and continuing every second Saturday through November.
Artists, crafters, makers and merchants are invited to bring merchandise to sell each Second Saturday from 4-9pm along Oak Street. This event will be no charge to attendees or people selling items and will be held rain or shine. Spaces are on a first come, first served basis. Sellers are welcome to bring tables and tents. There will be live music too so please join in the fun!
This coming Saturday is a busy day in Downtown Blue Springs starting with the Farmers Market, the Car Cruise and Second Saturdays – don’t miss it and if you’re interested in selling your treasurers, bring them to Oak Street beginning at 2pm for setup.
Also, don’t forget about the upcoming Downtown Alive! meetings for the month of August:
- Design Team – Friday, Aug 12th at 8am at the Pizza Shoppe
- Board meeting – Monday, Aug 15th at 8am at the Chamber
- Economic Vitality Team – Wednesday, Aug 17th at 4pm at Pizza Shoppe
- Friends of Downtown Alive! – Monday, Aug 22nd at 8am at Chamber
That’s it for now – see you in Downtown Blue Springs!!
We are proud to introduce our newest event — Second Saturday — a new, monthly event hosted by Downtown Blue Springs! This outdoor event will showcase local artists, makers and entertainers.
Artists, makers and merchants are invited to bring merchandise to sell each Second Saturday from 4-8 p.m. along Oak Street. This event will be no charge to attendees or people selling items and will be held rain or shine. All spaces are on a first-come, first-served basis; sellers are welcome to bring tables and tents.
Each month will bring a different mix of sellers, artists, makers, and activities and we’ll have different musical entertainment scheduled.
If you are a interested in participating in an upcoming Second Saturday event, please contact Cindy Miller at 816-808-7553.
Congratulations are in order to Downtown Alive! for receiving the “Creating Creative Place Award” from Missouri Main Street Connection during the annual Evening of Excellence awards ceremony this past Thursday. The award was for the “Remnants Restored” Public Art Project which used the aluminum from the America’s Community Bank building and steel from the water tower to create two commissioned pieces of public art placed in the downtown district. A special thank you to Truman Heartland Community Foundation and to the Blue Springs Public Art Commission for being such outstanding partners in this project. If you would like your name listed on the plaque placed in front of each art piece, please contact me.
Secondly, the City of Blue Springs, the Chamber, local downtown business owners and Downtown Alive! were finalists in the “Outstanding New Development Project” for the multi-faceted partnership involving the renovation of the Howard L. Brown Public Safety Building. As a result of the City’s infrastructure investments, many new and established businesses have relocated from major corridors to the thriving downtown district, showing that working closely with community partners makes a positive difference for residents and business owners.
The third piece of exciting news is that the four murals painted by the BSSD high school students are now installed. This is another project resulting from a grant received from the Truman Heartland Community Foundation and could not have been completed without the dedication of the BSSD Art Teachers and their students – Thank You for your hard work! THCF is hosting their “Behind the Scenes” event for their donors tomorrow evening, August 2nd, right here in downtown Blue Springs with walking tours of the murals and artwork beginning at 5:30pm. If you have a business downtown, you may want to stay open late to take advantage of those touring our district.
Last bit of news, there is a Pokemon Meet Up event on Wednesday, August 3rd. Join the fun as the Blue Springs Police Officers host a Pokemon Go scavenger hunt in Downtown Blue Springs beginning at 6pm. Meet the district police officers, search for lures and enjoy refreshments along the way! If you want to learn about the latest craze, this is your chance to learn in a safe environment!
Great things are happening in YOUR Downtown Blue Springs!!! Visit our website at www.downtownbluesprings.com to keep up to date on meetings and events. Please feel free to share this email with any of your own email lists to help spread the word.
Thank you and See You Downtown!