Letter to the editor – Jamie Daubendiek

Dear editor,

We would just like to say a big thank you to all the volunteers who were involved in helping Jefferson Matters: Main Street put on Main Street Iowa’s annual Fall Workshop last week.

This is an annual event where 94 attendees from more than 50 different Main Street Iowa communities come to learn and network with each other on how to make their communities a better place to live, work, and play.

Main Street Iowa surveys their conference participants to see how much they spend on lodging, food, gas, shopping and “other” to gauge how much of an economic impact hosting a conference can have for a community. The 63 people who responded spent $12,342.74, and every little bit helps.

They chose Jefferson because of all the exciting projects that have happened over the years (beautification efforts, fixing up dilapidated buildings, public art, business recruitment, volunteerism, and many others). Many of the communities were very impressed with how much has been accomplished in a short amount of time with the Main Street program and city partnership.

The Main Street approach is a grassroots effort that encourages baby steps along the way to make towns an attractive place to live, work, and play. This is exactly what we have done since becoming a Main Street community in 2012 and now looked upon as a leader for rural economic development in the State of Iowa.We weren’t ready for a $1 million façade project when we first started but we slowly built up successful projects that put us in position to tackle bigger projects than our first $250 mini grants.

We could not have done all of these impactful projects without the city council leadership to support our Main Street program. We feel that we are a Great American Main Street community and know this wouldn’t have happened without their continued support.

With the upcoming elections, we hope Jefferson residents will take time to vote. Find out which candidates are interested in keeping this positive momentum going. We look forward to working together as a partnership to continue the success that Jefferson has made since becoming a Main Street community in 2012.

Jamie Daubendiek
Jefferson Matters: Main Street board president

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