–The Luray Downtown Initiativeand the Town of Luray receive award for Outstanding Fundraising Effort in downtown revitalizations –
Richmond – On July 13, representatives of the Luray Downtown Initiative and the Town of Luray were presented with a Virginia Main Street Merit Award for Outstanding Fundraising Effort for their Tailgate Party and Chicken Chow Down events at the Virginia Main Street Downtown Intersections workshop in Staunton, Virginia.
“Our Virginia Main Street communities are revitalizing these beautiful downtown districts,” said Virginia Department of Housing and Community Development Director Bill Shelton. ”In the last five years, designated Main Street communities have sparked more than $161 million in private investment in their districts, and as a result, last year, there was a net collective gain of 2,637 jobs across our Main Street downtown districts.”
This award is given to the Main Street organization that has displayed the most creativity and success in securing funds for its downtown projects.
In the past year, the Luray Downtown Initiative has led a series of fundraising events as part of their annual fund development campaign. Their Tailgate Party and Chicken Chow Down events netted over $30,000 to advance Luray’s downtown revitalization activities.
In addition to Luray, Virginia Main Street recognized the following communities for excellence.
Altavista for Volunteer of the Year; Danville for Best Downtown Public Improvement Project; Gloucester for Best Downtown Retail Event; and Harrisonburg for Outstanding Business.
Currently, there are 29 designated Virginia Main Street communities: Abingdon, Altavista, Ashland, Bedford, Berryville, Blackstone, Bristol, Culpeper, Danville, Farmville, Franklin, Fredericksburg, Gloucester, Harrisonburg, Hopewell, Lexington, Luray, Lynchburg, Manassas, Marion, Martinsville, Orange, Saint Paul, South Boston, Staunton, Warrenton, Waynesboro, Winchester and Wytheville.
The Virginia Main Street program, managed by the Virginia Department of Housing and Community Development (DHCD), provides assistance and training to help communities increase the economic vitality of their downtown commercial districts. Virginia Main Street uses the National Main Street model to help communities revitalize their downtowns by focusing on their unique heritage and attributes. The program helps communities implement a comprehensive revitalization strategy that creates economic growth and pride in downtowns.
LDI has requested $10,000 from the Page County Board of Supervisors from the Transient Occupancy Tax fund. If approved, the money — which is allocated each year to help fund tourism-related projects —would help LDI in its first phase of establishing free downtown WiFi.
LDI is the lead organization to increase the economic vitality of Downtown Luray. One of our chief concerns is drawing and keeping tourists for longer periods to the historic district of Luray, while providing services that they appreciate or expect from their hometown or other favorite destinations. Free WiFi has become a standard for hip and tech-friendly places. LDI has begun to explore the possibility of installing a network to encompass historic downtown, including the library. The infrastructure for such a plan is extensive.
Shentel and the PCBA have many resources to include access to the cell tower in the middle of town, as well as dedicated fibers at the tower and other locations in the requested area. An internet survey went out to businesses confirming wide support. Harrisonburg has a free WiFi network that is shared among the downtown restaurants that many students as well as tourists enjoy rather than using their own data plans.
The $10,000 request would be placed in escrow as LDI asks the Town of Luray for equal funding, with plans to fundraise an equal amount this year and next. By partnering with Shentel and the PCBA — LDI believes momentum begins on the county level. Our request is for the TOT funds to encourage tourists to come to Town from their cabins or wedding destination and realize — that the Page Valley has modern amenities.
This weekend come meet vendors and plan your prefect day. Entry is just $5 if you buy your ticket in advance or $10 at the door.
So buy online and save time and money! Attend helpful seminars. Receive The Knot Magazine, promotional items and discounted services for booking at the show. It is a great way to learn about some great vendor options in the Shenandoah Valley!