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State Awards for Local Projects
August 4, 2015

C-T Photo / Brittany Tutt

CAPTION: Main Street Chillicothe recently put up new banners throughout the downtown area. According to Main Street Chillicothe assistant director, Ben White, about 80 new banners were put up on Friday night, just in time for the annual Sliced Bread Saturday event. The new banners are red and add a "pop of color" to downtown, according to White. The banners feature Crystal's Uptown Salon, which is a downtown business that won an award at state conference in 2014 for the best $10,000 facade renovation. According to White, it has been about six years since the downtown banners were changed.

C-T Photo / Brittany Tutt

Missouri Main Street Connection, Inc., presented downtown revitalization awards that recognize revitalization excellence during the annual Missouri Main Street Conference in Kansas City, Missouri, on Thursday. Main Street Chillicothe brought home several accolades, having received awards for three projects: Sliced Bread Saturday, the Adam Warren Law Office facade rehabilitation, and Main Street Holiday House Store. Micah Landes, executive director for Main Street Chillicothe, said she is proud of Chillicothe's downtown and the Main Street Chillicothe organization. Missouri Main Street Connection judges were complimentary about Chillicothe's efforts. 

Missouri Main Street Connection, launched as a non-profit organization in 2005, is designed to help communities preserve their historic buildings and reinvigorate their downtown districts. MMSC has served 178 communities across the state of Missouri. Through this work, the communities actively participating in the Missouri Main Street Program have successfully created 432 net new businesses and 2,605 net new jobs. Based on economic data collected from the communities in the top three tiers of the Missouri Main Street program, since 2006, $668 million of private investments have been made in the Main Street communities. For every dollar appropriated to MMSC by the state of Missouri, $1,857 of private investments were made. Public investments by municipal governments have totaled $127.9 million in improvements to infrastructure.

A ceremony Thursday night honored communities, individuals, businesses and civic organizations from across the state that have completed exemplary work in downtown revitalization. Competitive nominations were submitted for projects, activities and individuals in 14 different categories that covered aspects of design, economic restructuring, organization, promotion and other efforts in downtown revitalization. The Missouri Main Street Connection hosted the Evening of Excellence Awards at The Westin at Crown Center in Kansas City.

Main Street Chillicothe was recognized and receive awards in three categories. Adam Warren Law Office, of Chillicothe, won the award for Top Facade Rehabilitation over $10,000. Adam Warren Law Office, owned by attorney Adam Warren, underwent a $35,000 facade rehabilitation that was completed in December 2014. The rehabilitation was very unique in that it didn't just enhance one building's appearance. The architecture of the whole block was unified by this work. Adam Warren opened his private practice in the downtown building in 2006. He finished the interior remodel in 2009 and the exterior work was finished in December 2014. The metal slipcover on the exterior was replaced with a brick exterior. A balcony off the second floor was also added. The rehabilitation of the law office shows not only the importance of rehabilitations in downtown districts but also the importance of the pride of ownership. Judges' comment: This project "really transformed the building into a unique historic asset for the downtown. I love the recessed balcony... the restored facade is nicely done and tied together well. Really awesome job!"

The award for Top Promotional Event went to Main Street Chillicothe for its Sliced Bread Saturday event that highlights the history of Chillicothe as well as the present activity in the downtown district. To celebrate their history as the home of Sliced Bread, Main Street Chillicothe created an event, Sliced Bread Saturday, to celebrate the historic spirit of Chillicothe commerce, culture, and creativity that is still centered in the downtown district. The event celebrated the past and present of Chillicothe with A Walk In Time living history mural tour; two family entertainment performances in the downtown outdoor venue, the Silver Moon Plaza; business sidewalk sales; wide variety of street vendors; and the annual Bread Baking Contest. It was reported that over 600 visitors attended the event from 8:00 a.m. until 1:00 p.m. By inviting downtown businesses to participate in the sidewalk sale, the event also helped the owners increase customer traffic and sales. Sixteen businesses participated in the sale which allowed them to show gratitude and hospitality to their customers. One popular store in the area, Madison Avenue Fashion Exchange, said that is was their highest sales day ever.

C-T Photo / Beth Cox

This past holiday season, Main Street Chillicothe opened the Main Street Holiday House Store in the downtown district. The vision for the project came from the organization's Economic Restructuring Committee who hoped the store would provide a place for small businesses in the area to get their name and products some public exposure with hopes of these businesses growing into a store front in downtown Chillicothe. The Main Street Holiday House Store acted as an incubator for these small businesses who could not support a store front yet, but had the potential for becoming a downtown merchant. The Economic Restructuring Committee chose vendors that were viewed as exceptional small businesses and also complemented the vision of the store. Main Street Holiday House was open select hours Thursday through Saturday from Nov. 6 through Dec. 20 with the exception of Thanksgiving. Promotional events were planned by Main Street Chillicothe each Saturday to bring even more visitors to the store. As a result of the Holiday House, 3 of the 9 vendors have their products featured in Chillicothe businesses. The committee plans to have another Holiday House in the fall of 2015. Judges' comment: "I think this is a powerful example of an organization setting the stage for economic success in the district. By promoting entrepreneurship in a direct, positive and supportive fashion, Chillicothe is growing its own economic drivers of downtown success."

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