Paula Mathews – The Phone Station
Board Member Faribault Area Chamber of Commerce
The efforts for Main Street began over 40 years ago with a dedicated group of volunteers who formed a Downtown Association to help preserve, promote and restore the downtown area. In 1999, the Downtown Association approached the Chamber of Commerce to take over the management of the Downtown Association. This formed a great partnership eliminating duplication of dues and efforts to promote downtown.
Over the course of the years the name has changed a few times and in July of 2010 downtown became a designated Main Street community, officially, Faribault Main Street.
Under this new title we have many dedicated volunteers committed to the four point approach; Organization, Promotion, Design and Economic Restructuring.
The organization committee is dedicated to exploring and creating sustainable funding. Some recent fundraising events that were enjoyed by many are the dunk tank event at the Blue Collar festival and the Mystery Entertainment Crawl.
Fall is fast approaching and the promotions committee is working on the great Fall Festival & chili contest to be held on Saturday Oct 13. This committee also has members who have worked tirelessly to create the monthly car cruise nights from May-Sept each year bringing lots of great cars and people to our downtown area.
Keeping our downtown area inviting and accessible, the design committee continues to successfully raise money for the flower baskets that grace our streets. They have also acquired grants that promote walking tours of our historical downtown and bike racks.
The economic restructuring committee has a big job. They work to keep vacancies down in the Faribault Main Street area. Their efforts are paying off in that between Jan 1-Aug 31 2012, we have a net increase of 10 FMS businesses.
There are many great accomplishments being met through Faribault Main Street, Chamber of Commerce and the City itself. Our community is a constant work in progress. I challenge you to engage yourself and or your business by joining one of the committees above or just contacting a member to share your thoughts, ideas or what you think Main Street should work on next.