Those who have traveled our downtown area on foot lately might have noticed a growing collection of pavers on 3rd Street at Gillette Avenue. It’s a project by Gillette Main Street (GMS) that has been in the works for a few years and is now becoming a bigger reality.
The pavers are being placed along the sidewalk on 3rd Street, centered by a large Gillette Main Street logo. GMS Executive Director Jessica Seders and her husband spent last weekend adding more to the project which is shaping up nicely in its beginning stages.
“Helping our community is what we do,” Seders says.
The pavers are available to anyone. There are many options when it comes to branding each personalized stone.
“You can put pretty much anything on them,” explained Seders. “It could be your name, a business, in memory of a loved one, a logo. There are a lot of things we can do and with color.”
The paver program is a great way to cement yourself, your family or your business as a pillar in the community with a prominent place on Gillette’s Main Street. Pavers can be purchased anytime by filling out the order form and selecting your level of commitment.
Pavers cost $125; the price is the same if you just purchase the engraved stone or you can join Friends of Gillette Main Street at the “Gold Friend of GMS” level and you get some additional benefits at that level. Of course, individuals and businesses can also join at a higher level of Friends of Gillette Main Street and receive more promotions.
“The higher the level, the more benefits you or a business receive, and you get a paver, so just let us know what would fit you best,” Seder said. “This 100% helps fund the Gillette Main Street Program.”
Although 2020 was a tough year for most with the record-setting hometown support, Gillette Main Street was able to support the community with downtown activities and events that encouraged supporting local first.
“Members of Gillette Main Street noted how Gillette came together to support the community through this trying time has been nothing short of astounding,” Seders said. “Instead of using the national crisis as an excuse, Gillette rose to the occasion.”
The GMS program is a non-profit organization whose mission is to provide economic and social opportunities by promoting and strengthening the viability and historic preservation of downtown Gillette. The organization is gearing up for its two biggest events of the year in the next seven weeks – Brews & Cruise this week and Boo-Fest on Oct. 30.
Members can be recognized in many ways, from banners at events such as Brews & Cruise and Boo-Fest and a place on the organization’s website and social media to pavers and becoming a permanent fixture downtown.
During a pandemic year that left many downtowns across the country shuttered with businesses that will never reopen, it was a much different story right here in the energy capital. According to GMS, support for shopping local in Downtown Gillette resulted in 10 new businesses opening and four significant expansions.
The organization has strived to help the community remember our local businesses and vibrant downtown by bringing more than 12,500 people to Gillette Avenue just for events. This year, GMS said merchants reported up to a 70% increase in revenue over 2019 – a testament to the hard work and long hours being put into our town by our merchants, GMS, and supporters who together brought even more of our community to see the opportunities available in Downtown Gillette.
Already, 2021 is shaping up to have its own challenges. This is where our community and businesses will need the support of GMS more than ever. For the past six years, GMS has brought the community together, fostering local pride in Downtown Gillette and with the community’s help, it can plan to use this strong momentum to get through more difficult times and come out the other side even stronger.
“We need your support to sustain our downtown growth. Now, more than ever, we need to keep our money local,” Seders said. “Making our community aware of all the shopping, businesses, and activities available in Downtown Gillette. We will continue and grow our community spirit and turn our central engine of commerce.”
GMS works to promote and improve Downtown Gillette year-round with more than 30 events, activities, and promotions including but not limited to: Beautification Projects (Including 3rd Street Plaza improvements), social media presence/advertising downtown businesses, Downtown Dollars, downtown business recruitment, retention and expansion, Summer BrewFest & Car Show, Boo-Fest & Trick-or-Treat Main Street, window decorating contests, Plaid Friday/Small Business Saturday, downtown bingo, bear hunt, curbside pick-up and take-out Tuesdays, Cruise Night, singer/songwriter competition, and Downtown Thursday Night Concert Series.
Each contribution goes directly to the heart of Gillette – the downtown area – by stimulating economic growth and creating beautiful public areas. Since becoming a Certified Main Street Community six short years ago, the organization has grown tremendously and will continue to do so with the hometown support.
For more information contact Seders at 307-689-8369 or program coordinator Stephanie Crawford at 307-660-2506. For a printable form, click here Paver Form 2021