Lamar Hosts Downtown Institute this Week

The Lamar Main Street Steering Committee finalized their roster of members March 23, voting in at-large candidates, Denise Carder from Valley National Bank and Skip Gourley from the Main Street Shoppe.

Main Street Director Shawna Hodge said the majority of the meeting helped outline a master Strategic Plan for the committee which will continue to refine objectives and the means by which they’ll be achieved. She said the committee has an all-day meeting in September which will finalize the Plan. Members will work to recruit volunteers for the plan’s four point objectives: organization; design; promotion and economic restructuring. Another immediate goal will focus on achieving partnerships with civic, business and social groups in Lamar.

Hodge has been preparing for this week, when Lamar will act as host city for the 2011 Downtown Institute. The two-day series, set for April 7 and 8 will focus on a community-based management approach to help put new economic life into downtown and commercial centers. The April 7 meeting will be open only to Institute managers, and will culminate that evening with an art show at the Shore Arts Center, hosted by the Southeast Colorado Arts Council, from 6 to 8pm. Members of the Downtown Colorado Institute are expected to attend.

Various business people have registered to attend the April 8 seminar which will be held at the Cultural Events Center. Those who wish to attend should contact Shawna Hodge at the Lamar Chamber of Commerce at 688-8073. Design, one of the four points of downtown organization will be stressed in a series of seminars starting at 8:10am. Others will follow through the day, covering topics such as Design 101, Transportation; Defining Your Business Districts; Designing a Resident Friendly Historic Commercial District; Lamar History and the Next Steps and a walking tour along Main Street which concludes the seminars by 4:45pm.

Registration for the Friday seminar series is still open; contact Lamar Main Street Coordinator Shawn Hodge at 688-8073.

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