Monday, June 28, 2010

Main Street Arkansas Calendar June 28-July 2


MONDAY Greg, Susan, Mark & Nancy in DeWitt

TUESDAY Greg, Nancy & Mark in Helena; Susan in Paragould

WEDNESDAY Greg, Nancy & Mark in Russellville, Susan in Rogers

THURSDAY Susan-Rogers



Arkansas Preservation Grants awarded last week

Press coverage with video at

Nice Press for opening in downtown Paragould

Tour (on video below) Harry Truman Moore's newly rehabilitated place in a historic bank building in downtown Paragould. With law offices below and new apartments upstairs, it's a Main Street showcase, and one of MSA interior design consultant Susan Shaddox's biggest projects this year.

Downtown Rogers business wins national green award

Brick Street Botanicals won a Green Plus North American Sustainable Enterprise award from the Institute for Sustainable Development. Brick Street can proudly call itself the Green Plus Sustainable Sole Proprietor of the Year.

Historic rehabilitation tax credit programs are efficient job creators

Rutgers University has comprehensively studied the impact of the Federal Historic Tax Credit Program since its beginnings, in 1976. Their report shows the tax program to be a “highly efficient creator of jobs.” Highlights and link to the report:

On a related note, PlaceEconomics just completed an economic impact assessment of the state of Delaware’s Historic Preservation Tax Credit Program, which has proven to be a major economic development tool in the state. We hope the same will come of Arkansas’s new program.

Face Time: How to Reach Young Donors

(May 11, 2010) Although we often associate people ages 20 to 40 with texting, Facebook and other high-tech communications, donors in that age group say that when it comes to requests for their time or money, they put high value on face-to-face communication.

Getting a Green Light from the IRS

We hear this complaint all the time. A Main Street program files an application for 501(c)(3) status using the model application provided by the National Trust Main Street Center (NTMSC). The organization has carefully conformed its articles of incorporation to the sample purpose statement endorsed by the NTMSC. The application is identical to the successful application filed by an organization in the neighboring town. And yet, the IRS turns them down. How could this be?

Friday, June 25, 2010

Rediscovering the old Avenue Hotel in Texarkana

Main Street Arkansas Interior Design Consultant Susan Shaddox met with new property owners of the historic Avenue Hotel in downtown Texarkana this week. The old place has been boarded up for years, but don't let its shady looks deceive you--it's a gem inside. Interior features include original tile floors, transom windows, gorgeous wood finishes, the old receptionists' office, light fixtures and virtually all of the building's windows remain intact, which is a rare find on Main Street. Susan spent the day measuring the space for possible plans to convert it into an apartment building. No final plans as of now, but we hope to get back to Texarkana soon to work on this building.

Below: shots of the exterior, front entrance with tile floor, transom windows, room number, fuse box, and arched doorway.

Monday, June 21, 2010

Main Street Arkansas Calendar June 21-25



TUESDAY Mark and Susan – Transportation Program Workshop in LR

WEDNESDAY Nancy – Batesville, Susan - Texarkana

THURSDAY Mark – Rogers, Susan & Caroline - Searcy




Back to the basics of business

Retail Expert Rick Segel reflects on the basics of small business after a peaceful retreat without cell phone service. An excerpt reads:

As you revisit your dream, add this to the equation. Ask yourself how you and your business can enhance the lives of your customers. Are you bringing unique merchandise that they can’t find elsewhere? Are you providing a service that is so special they wouldn’t go elsewhere? Or realize that your competitive advantage is the location and the convenience you offer your customer? Just know what makes you special and/or why your customers think you are special. After all, if you are going to be a specialty business, it’s time you put special back into your businesses.

Historic law library and more in downtown Paragould

For most of us a law library would not be very interesting. But what about the location that the library was located in? The building itself part of history..part of Paragould's history.

A Green Model in Arkansas

MSA staff attended a lunch seminar last week about the Green Built Arkansas Model Home. The Model Home is located in the Woodland’s edge, the first 4-star Green Certified Neighborhood in West Little Rock. Although not quite compatible with historic building rehabilitation, there are some basic principles on best practices in sustainability and green building on their web site. Web site also includes a list of Certified Green Professionals in the state.

Eleven principles for creating great community places

The Project for Public Spaces (PPS) identifies 11 key elements in transforming public spaces into vibrant community places, whether they’re parks, plazas, public squares, streets, sidewalks or the myriad other outdoor and indoor spaces that have public uses in common.

Tips for State Transportation Fund Applicants

For those of you who are applying with your cities for the Arkansas State Highway Transportation Enhancement Funds (deadline: Augst 25!), the National Transportation Enhancements Clearinghouse’s web site is a great resource. There are plenty of Arkansas examples in the Project Examples section: West Memphis Broadway Revitalization, Rogers Frisco Park and Trail, and Hot Springs Creek Greenway. Also the Searles Prairie in Rogers in the Environmental Mitigation section, and the Big Dam Bridge Little Rock in the Pedestrian-Bike Facilities section.

Application deadline for the Arkansas Transportation Enhancement Program is August 25, 2010. If you have questions about this program please call a Main Street staff member.

Friday, June 18, 2010

Thursday, June 10, 2010

Rabbit's Lair Moving in Downtown Rogers

Main Street interior design consultant Susan Shaddox is currently working on paint colors and furniture placement for the Rabbit's Lair in downtown Rogers, which is moving from 101 West Walnut to 116 First Street. It's a lovely quilting/fabric/craft store--one of the best in the state, and the owner, tastefully, chooses to house her business in historic downtown buildings. She and Susan will integrate historic features of the building into the interior design and layout of her business. Can't wait to see the finished product! Above is the first store; below is the location where they'll me moving, soon to be rehabilitated. Check out their web site to see the plethora of fabric, crafts and classes they offer.

Monday, June 7, 2010

MSA Weekly Update: June 7-11, 2010

Main Street Arkansas Calendar June 7-11, 2010



TUESDAY-Susan and Caroline – Texarkana, Greg and Mark – South Main

WEDNESDAY-Susan - Russellville


FRIDAY Nancy and Susan - Helena



DeWitt Square Listed on the National Register of Historic Places

State Rehabilitation Tax Credit Projects Growing

Help spread the word in your communities about the state's new historic rehabilitation tax credit that was passed last winter. We're beginning to see folks take advantage of this new program, which, unlike the federal tax program, includes incentives for private/residential properties. Check it out.

IA's Lunch and Learn: 10 Early-Stage Business and Company Governance Issues

Kutak Rock and Innovate Arkansas will host a Lunch and Learn on July 14 to discuss early-stage business and company or corporate governance issues. Topics will include business and financing plans, friends and family financings, multiple founders, buy-sell agreements, equity transfer restrictions and equity incentive plans for IA clients.

If you would like to attend, please contact Vicki Malpass at

Main Street Input Needed on Farm Bill Reauthorization. The House Agriculture Committee is accepting comments on the next Farm Bill through June 14th. We are encouraging our network to provide input from Main Street communities, so that the committee hears from a wide range of stakeholders. Secretary of Agriculture Tom Vilsack testified at the first reauthorization hearing and expressed the Administration’s commitment to funding regional rural development initiatives in the next Farm Bill. This focus on regional, “place-based” initiatives fits well with many rural historic preservation efforts. Increasingly, rural communities are seeking support from USDA Rural Development for a range of historic preservation initiatives, including Main Street revitalization, heritage tourism, and historic building rehabilitation projects.

If you know of communities that have either participated in USDA Rural Development programs, or would like to comment, please pass this message along to them.

Application deadline for the Arkansas Transportation Enhancement Program is August 25, 2010. If you have questions about this program please call a Main Street staff member.

Wednesday, June 2, 2010

Old Marion High School Spared

GOOD NEWS from Marion, AR for one of the buildings on this year's Most Endangered Places List. The Marion School Board voted Thursday evening to approve a new building plan which meets the school's needs and spares the Old Marion High School building. The board gave proponents of saving the 1912 school one year to raise money to rehab the historic building. The Marion Historic Society and the Marion alumni group will begin fundraising efforts immediately. Visit or the Save Historic Marion (Ark) High School Facebook page for more info on the building.

Tuesday, June 1, 2010

Main Street Arkansas June 1-4, 2010

MONDAY-Memorial Day

TUESDAY Susan – Heber Springs

WEDNESDAY Greg and Caroline – Jonesboro, Susan – Paragould and Rector





Nonprofit Helps Arkansas Businesses Thrive

During a recent workshop in conjunction with a Cooperative Baptist Fellowship of Arkansas assembly, Will Staley and Terrance Clark led a brainstorming exercise about the positive aspects of Helena, an impoverished town in the Arkansas Delta.

Reinventing the Courthouse

The courthouse of the last century was a cornerstone of the community, a source of local pride and the nexus of social life and ritual. But today, courthouses and the public spaces that often surround them are, for the most part, physically and programmatically disconnected from public life, even though they regularly occupy central property in a community.

Better Block Project, Dallas Texas

For two days on April 10th and 11th, 2010, locals changed a car-centric thoroughfare to a people-friendly destination, complete with temporary businesses like a cafe, flower market, kid’s art studio, and featuring historic lighting, cafe seating, live music and more. All with a budget of $1000! The event was such a success that city hall now wants to make it permanent.

Application deadline for the Arkansas Transportation Enhancement Program is August 25, 2010. If you have questions about this program please call a Main Street staff member.