Director of the Heart of Danville presents information to Kiwanis

Published 8:39 am Wednesday, April 11, 2018

Nick Wade, executive director of the Heart of Danville Main Street program, presented information this past Thursday to Kiwanis Club of Danville.
Wade emphasized why the work of the Heart of Danville is important by expanding on these points:
• A vibrant downtown is indicative of a healthy community with a good quality of life.
• A vibrant downtown maintains and expands the tax base and uses existing infrastructure wisely.
• A vibrant downtown helps attract and retain quality employees.
• A vibrant downtown provides the atmosphere and services important to visitors to your businesses.
In addition, he shared that in 2017, the local impact of Downtown Danville activity was $13 million in public and private investment, 16 net new businesses, and 177 net new jobs.
Wade shared that there is a four-point process that is the foundation for any Main Street program to revitalize a downtown by leveraging local assets—from cultural or architectural heritage to local businesses and community pride: Economic, Design/Preservation, Promotion and Organization.
Overarching goals for 2018-19 that he shared included:
• Engaging residents, downtown workers —Capitalize on the all-important “captive” customer group – and help to meet more of their needs, making the district an even more appealing place for people to live and work.
• Maximizing entrepreneurship — Create the environment that supports local entrepreneurs expanding the creative mix of food, retail and experiential offerings in downtown.
Expanding on those goals, Wade outlined the following plan for 2018-19.
• Create entrepreneurial training program
• Quarterly education series (beginning July 2018)
• Research the impact of an entertainment district
• Pop-up shops
• Guide to business in downtown Danville
• Conduct walkability audit
• Community mural
• Facade iImprovement small grant program
• Develop a public art resource guide
• Develop 2018-19 events calendar
• Coordinate advertising between Heart of Danville and the businesses
• Develop “I Heart Downtown Danville” campaign
• Maintain updated website and communication efforts
• Develop a volunteer training/retention program
• Strengthen support from downtown businesses and the community
More of what’s in store for 2018, Wade said, included: pop-up shops; murals; Main Street Live; six Lawn Chair Theaters, including one as a thank you to our volunteers, one for a date night; Soul of Second Street Festival; HarvestFest; Skate on Main and Christmas Parade; other fun events; and “I Heart Downtown Danville” merchandise.
For more information about Heart of Danville, and to share any input in helping them with their goals, visit,, or call (859) 236-2361 ext.141.
To learn more about Kiwanis Club of Danville, email or

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