Jacksonville Main Street

Jacksonville Main Street

Jacksonville, IL

http://www.jacksonvillemainstreet.com

Downtown Jacksonville is finally starting to flourish with award-winning arts, entertainment, and shopping plus preservation-friendly development after 40-years of Urban Renewal blight and desolation. Behind this Great American Main Street Community's success is Jacksonville Main Street, advocating for small business and preservation, delivering access to rehabilitation and business incentives, building consensus and partnerships, enhancing downtown's appearance, and producing family-friendly events. JMS beautification projects augment downtown's historic character with vintage Ferris wheel benches and 100+ trees and plantings. Historic site developments, like Looking for Lincoln exhibits and restored Civil War Monument and cannon, draw visitors to Jacksonville's newly designated Downtown National Register Historic District. Jacksonville Main Street's Craft Brew Fest and Makers Market highlights Illinois-made products, attracting thousands annually. The Pumpkin Festival offers fun for all with costume contests, smores-making, kid-rides, pumpkin drops, and decorating. JMS helps entrepreneurs develop their own First Friday and Small Business Saturday specials and supplements their marketing. Plans are underway for this locally-funded non-profit's 20th Anniversary Celebration in 2019. JMS offers two low-interest loan programs to support property enhancement and long-range economic development goals. Embracing new technology, JMS provides free Wi-Fi in the park, hosts online available space and interactive business directories, plus trains businesses to utilize social media and encourages patronage with online promotions. JMS would use AMS Contest winnings to continue its beloved free summer-long concert series, which celebrates diversity and brings the community together. This award would also help fund restoration of and addition to its 10 Wall Dog murals, popular, but badly weather-damaged heritage tourism attractions, created in 2006, that commemorate local history.