Understanding that now more than ever Michigan residents need to support downtowns and the businesses within by shopping, dining, attending an event, or volunteering, the MDA contacted the Governor’s office and requested that Saturday, September 26, 2020, be declared Downtown Day. The organization received the official Proclamation, signed by Governor Whitmer, earlier this month.
The MDA encourages community members to visit a downtown on September 26 and enjoy its shops, restaurants, and recreational and cultural aspects.
“The MDA believes Downtown Day will bring positive attention and recognition to small businesses and downtown cores,” Dana Walker, director of the MDA, said. “There are many opportunities for Michigan residents to safely support downtowns like strolling sidewalks, having a picnic in a park, ordering carryout, or leaving a positive review for a retail store on social media,” she continued.
The MDA states a downtown is the commercial core of a community that serves as its social and economic center.
“Downtowns, and the small businesses located within, deserve to be celebrated for they distinguish a community, are the drivers of economic development, and help to offer a sense of place that contribute significantly to the quality of life of residents,” Walker said. “The small businesses located within a downtown create jobs, commerce, and investment,” she explained.
With the importance of a strong downtown in mind, and to help celebrate its 40th Anniversary, the MDA has created a ’40 Ways in 40 Days to Love Downtown’ promotion that kicks off during Downtown Day. Each day after September 26, the MDA and Charlevoix Main Street will post on (our) social media outlets an activity one can do to offer support to a small business or show love for a downtown. Examples include having a hot beverage from a downtown coffee shop or bakery, visiting a downtown park, and posting a selfie in front of a favorite downtown store.
“The last six months have taken a toll, but downtowns are resilient and are adapting to current situations,” Walker said. “Our small businesses and downtowns need locals to support them in whatever way possible,” she continued.
The Michigan Downtown Association (MDA), founded in 1980, is a state-wide, non-profit organization and a driving force in the interest and growth of downtowns and communities throughout Michigan. The MDA encourages the development, redevelopment, and continuing improvement of Michigan communities and downtowns. Its 183 members support economic development within the State of Michigan and include cities, Downtown Development Authorities, township, villages, Principal Shopping Districts, chambers of commerce, individuals, and businesses.
For more information regarding Downtown Day and the Michigan Downtown Association, please contact Dana Walker, 248-838-9711, or visit www.michigandowntowns.com.