DDM gets Main Street Program designation
by Special to the Daily News
Downtown Middlesboro is now a “Designated Kentucky Main Street Program.”
The Board of Directors of Discover Downtown Middlesboro Inc., made the announcement, noting this is the first time the organization received the designation since being founded in 2006.
“We are extremely honored to be among an elite group of just over two dozen designated programs in Kentucky,” said Keith Nagle, president of Discover Downtown Middlesboro. “This is a testament to the hard work of our board, volunteers, staff and everyone who has contributed to the success of our organization.”
In January 2013, the organization submitted an application to the Kentucky Main Street program documenting the work of the organization over the previous year. The application measured the work of the program in many ways, including demonstrating community support for the commercial district revitalization process, having a mission and vision statement, and having a comprehensive work plan.
The organization was required to demonstrate an historic preservation ethic, an active board of directors, adequate operating budget, and a paid professional program manager. Other requirements included providing ongoing training for staff and volunteers, reporting key statistics about businesses and jobs created and the level of public and private investment in the downtown area.
“As much as we are excited about the progress we’ve made to date, the best is yet to be,” said DDM Executive Director Isaac Kremer.
Presently, the organization is working to finalize a strategic plan to clearly lay out their work for the next five years. A preservation plan and philanthropic plan are expected to be completed by November.
Work is being done to host a Build a Better Block event where a single block of the downtown is transformed by around 100 people in 48 hours for less than $1,000. This event is planned for Oct. 25-26.
The efforts have been supported by grants from the Appalachian Regional Commission, Appalachian Regional Philanthropic Initiative, Brushy Fork Institute, Center for Rural Development, the Kentucky Heritage Council, Kentucky League of Cities and the National Trust for Historic Preservation.
For those who want to participate, contact DDM at (606) 248-6155 or via our website at www.downtownmiddlesboro.org. The organization is also on Facebook and Twitter at “DDMBoro.”
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