Iowa Community Expedition
November 11, 2019 | Janie Dennison
Last week, Missouri Main Street Connection had the opportunity to take Missouri Executive Directors and other community representatives on the Iowa Community Expedition. They were able to visit five different Iowa communities and learned valuable lessons at each stop. The five communities were Ottumwa, Oskaloosa, Downtown Des Moines East Village, Valley Junction, and Centerville. MMSC was grateful for the hospitality we received at each of these communities. It made for an incredible learning experience! #MainStreetOnTheRoad
Comments from our Directors about what they learned or were inspired by in Ottumwa:
- “We want to create more events that will bring minorities downtown.”
- “I met a lot of inspiring people that lead their Main Street in a small town.”
- “Top Hats supporting a soup kitchen in the back of their business. We were inspired to give back more to the local community.”
- The use of planters.
- Green roofs.
- “The back entrances were welcoming and I would love to take that back to my community.”
Comments from our Directors about what they learned or were inspired by in Oskaloosa:
- Small whimsical touches.
- “I want to name our alleys.”
- Amazing upper story living.
- Planters wrapped with historic photos.
Valley Junction, Iowa
Comments from our Directors about what they learned or were inspired by in Valley Junction:
- “I loved the Valley Junction Arch found in downtown.”
- “The cool signage as a result of a grant program.”
- “The stores were unique and I found connections to keep in contact with to use for future events.”
- “Digital signage in a store to share promotions and community events.”
Comments from our Directors about what they learned or were inspired by in Centerville:
- “We learned about the purple cow and we believe we found ours!”
- The wide variety of businesses downtown.
- Using numbers in downtown decisions.
- The above and beyond hospitality and kindness.
Gayla Roten said, “I’m excited to be able to bring Executive Directors on this Community Expedition. We look forward to be able to do this again so that Missouri Main Streets are able to visit other communities to continue to be inspired and thrive.”
To view more photos please visit: https://www.facebook.com/MissouriMainStreetConnection