Home » Kentucky Main Street local programs, managers honored for excellence; Danville called “rock star”

Kentucky Main Street local programs, managers honored for excellence; Danville called “rock star”

Awards ceremony Jan. 25 recognizes community projects, revitalization initiatives

FRANKFORT, Ky. (Jan. 27, 2012) – Heart of Danville was the big winner during presentation of the 2012 Kentucky Main Street Program Awards, which took place Wednesday at the Grand Theatre in Frankfort. In addition to established categories, the Award for Excellence in the Main Street Four-Point Approach® for 2012 was created by the awards committee specifically for Danville, in recognition of its successful implementation and integration of each of these revitalization strategies – promotion, organization, design and economic restructuring.

“Danville is a rock star in the Kentucky Main Street Program,” said presenter Lindy Casebier, acting director of the Kentucky Heritage Council and deputy secretary of the Kentucky Tourism, Arts and Heritage Cabinet. “The Heart of Danville continually seeks new ways to do better, be better, and do right by its community.”

Awards were also presented based on the four-point approach model created by the National Trust Main Street Center, principles communities can use to revitalize their business district by leveraging local assets – from cultural or architectural heritage to local enterprises and community pride. The Heart of Danville board was honored also for strategic planning with the Best of Organization 2012 award.

Other winning projects and programs were:

· Best of Promotion – Marketing Award: Heart of Scottsville, for a Facebook campaign to increase the program’s fan base and raise public awareness of its work.

· Best of Promotion – Retail/Event Award: Bellevue Renaissance, for creating two consecutive, fun events to attract shoppers to Main Street over the July Fourth weekend, a typically slow retail sales period.

· Organization (subcategory), Best Creative Fundraising: Discover Downtown Middlesboro, for the Downtown Ducky Dash, a fundraiser for victims of last summer’s downtown flood.

· Design (subcategory), Best Downtown Public Improvement Project: Paris Main Street Program, for creating a two-mile Downtown Paris Walking Trail encouraging fitness while showcasing local businesses.

· Best of Design Award: Springfield Main Street/Renaissance and owners Ed and Kris O’Daniel, for rehabilitation of the 1879 Louisville Store Building, located on a prominent downtown corner.

· Best of Economic Restructuring Award: Main Street Russellville, for creating alliances to facilitate opening of Kentucky Artisans at the Saddle Factory, a business showcasing the work of local and regional artists.

Former Kentucky Heritage Council Executive Director David Morgan was also on hand to present an award named in his honor, the David L. Morgan Outstanding Main Street Partner Award for 2012, which went to the Springfield Main Street/Renaissance Program for its downtown marketing partnership with St. Catharine College. Morgan retired in 2006 after 22 years as state historic preservation officer.

Winners were presented a custom platter designed by Louisville Stoneware. The Kentucky Main Street Program and the award winners were also recognized by a resolution introduced in the Kentucky Senate yesterday, sponsored by Sen. Ray S. Jones, D-Pikeville.

The Kentucky State University Marching Band Thorobred Drumline opened the ceremony, which was hosted by Julie Turnipseed, the long-time Downtown Henderson Project manager who left the program last year after 25 years at the helm. The event also premiered a new video, “Historic Preservation: Saving Place,” narrated by Nick Clooney and created by Barking Fish Lounge productions with the assistance from a Certified Local Government grant provided by the Heritage Council and National Park Service.

Heart of Danville and the Downtown Henderson Project each received a certificate for 25 years in the Kentucky Main Street Program. Others honored were:

Volunteers of the Year: Ken Bowman, Fort Thomas; Karen Eldridge, LaGrange; Noel Kirkpatrick, Russellville; Kenny Marrett, Lebanon; Darrel McFerron, Murray; Lori Saunders, Georgetown; and Kevin Smith, Middlesboro.

Businesses of the Year: Citizens Union Bank, LaGrange; Cleves and Lonnemann Jewelers, Bellevue; Craig & Hall Insurance, Georgetown; The Crowded House, Madisonville; Puckett’s Jewelry, Benton; Red Elephant Studio, Scottsville; Tucker Diamonds and Gold, Campbellsville; and Weaver’s Hot Dogs, London.

Administered by the Kentucky Heritage Council/State Historic Preservation Office, the Kentucky Main Street Program is based on the National Trust model and is the oldest statewide Main Street program in the nation. The awards ceremony was the highlight of a three-day training conference focusing on the theme “A Shiny New Year Full of Opportunity.” For photos and descriptions of projects, visit www.heritage.ky.gov <http://www.heritage.ky.gov> .

The Main Street program works to build local businesses, support public-private partnerships and enhance economic development while preserving unique local architecture and existing community infrastructure. The program can document more than $3.5 billion reinvested in Kentucky since 1979. In 2010 alone, participating communities reported more than $465 million invested in downtowns, representing 720 net jobs in Main Street districts, 367 new businesses created, and 391 downtown buildings rehabilitated. Program managers are hired locally, directed by a volunteer board and work closely with business owners, volunteers and elected officials to achieve local objectives.