By Deanna Bonn Times Gazette
El Dorado Main Street held its Downtown District #20 meeting on May 10 at Charley’s Appliance to discuss downtown events.
Jeff Christensen, Chairman of the Main Street Board of Directors, was the moderator for the event which was attended by several downtown business owners and interested parties.
The briefing provided a forum for updates on current projects and plans for future events, one of which is the addition of outdoor acoustics to improve the atmosphere in the downtown district. city.
A new business is opening in District 142. The main bakery shop will offer old-fashioned pastries and ice cream. Shelby Engraf, also owner of The Rose Buffalo, will offer custom cake and cookie orders as well as walk-in shopping options. It hopes to be open in time for the next Grateful Thursday on June 2.
Engraf intends to showcase other local home bakers in its store.
“Community over competition,” Engraf said. “I’m all about the community and I want to showcase others.”
Emily Connell, executive director of El Dorado Main Street, announced that she will be expanding her staff and is looking to hire for a new communications manager position with a grant from VISTA (Volunteers in Service to American), in partnership with Wichita State University.
“This is a one-year, full-time paid service opportunity,” Connell said. “This will be the perfect opportunity for someone who enjoys creating positive and uplifting messages promoting downtown El Dorado.”
“They will help expand and improve electronic media communications to a broad regional audience,” Connell said.
The grant provides an annual living allowance of $15,000 plus a scholarship of $6,400 (student loan repayment) or an additional cash stipend of $1,800 at the end of the one-year program.
The Main Street fundraiser for this year is an inaugural garden tour with plans for another to be held at Christmas time.
Harold Harmon of Walter’s Flowers and Interiors is leading the event on Sunday June 12. In case of rain, the following Sunday, June 19, will be the alternative date.
The Garden Tour will be a walking tour that will take guests to and through an English Garden, a Waterfall Garden, a Sculpture Garden and a Butterfly Garden. Tickets are $20 and are available for purchase at Walter’s, Robin’s, and Prairie Garden Nursery & Garden Center.
City Manager David Dillner provided an update on plans for the recently awarded $3 million BASE grant to the City of El Dorado. The Building a Stronger Economy (BASE) economic development grant program is for water infrastructure and industrial development.
“The BASE program is essential to improving Kansas’ economic competitiveness,” Governor Laura Kelly said in a press release. “These grants provide critical funding to our local communities,
position them for success and be a place of continued economic growth.
According to Dillner, the funds will go towards a project to improve the water pipes leaving the water treatment plant. All projects must be completed and funds must be spent within two years of the award date