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Local group at Destination Downtown conference

By Dale Gathright, Jr., 09/20/21 5:51 PM

STARKVILLE, MISSISSIPPI – Hempstead County Economic Development Corporation President Steve Harris, Mark Ross, a Hope business owner, EDC board member and active member of the Hope Downtown Network,  and Hope-Hempstead County County Chamber of Commerce Director Beckie Moore attended Destination Downtown (DD) last week at the Mill Conference Center in Starkville, MS. The conference theme was the “Power of Place.”

Destination Downtown, a partnership between the Mississippi Main Street Association, Main Street Arkansas, and Louisiana Main Street, and is the South’s premier downtown revitalization conference with Main Street executive directors, board members, city officials, merchants, property owners and others gathering to share ideas on building sustainable downtown communities. This conference has been held annually for more than 15 years and rotates states and Main Street communities where it is hosted each year.

The conference is open to anyone with an interest in the economic revitalization of historic commercial districts through a historic preservation approach. Destination Downtown is designed so that attendees learn from their colleagues as well as from experts in the field.

The entire week was dedicated to downtown programs, activities and events that strengthen communities. Moore said, “We are returning with powerful plans that can be implemented in our historic downtown! We visited with folks who are walking through various stages of downtown development. Several “things” (main things) we all had in common: We love and appreciate our communities, and we believe that Main Street’s (4-point) approach is key to downtown business revitalization & historic preservation!(Design/ Organization/ Economic Vitality/ Promotion) Thank you Hope Downtown Network for the opportunity to attend the conference!”