ESCANABA – The Escanaba Downtown Development Authority is getting ready to implement its facade program this year, is changing direction on plans for the Farmer’s Market and agreed to be a sponsor of a downtown event.
DDA Facade Program
Ten downtown businesses are participating in this year’s facade program at the Escanaba Downtown Development Authority, the most ever in one year.
DDA director Ed Legault said an effort to make downtown Escanaba a historic district is creating momentum in developing the downtown.
“Over the last couple of months, several people have asked me how to get involved in it so we are also going to take a look at how we have communicated it in the past and we are working with the historical commission to take a look at some of their feedback on what I would call historical buildings and gems downtown that we want to make sure are in pristine condition,” Legault said.
Many of the designs for this year’s projects are incorporating the historical aspects of the buildings.
Legault said the businesses involved will be meeting with members of the Michigan Economic Development Corporation and State Historic Preservation Office in early March to review plans and ask questions.
Redesigning Farmer’s Market
The Escanaba Downtown Development Authority is now looking at the possibility of redesigning its Farmer’s Market facility. Last month, the DDA decided to drop the idea of an indoor facility at a different location.
Sue Parker, DDA president, said they hope the new design will give the facility a festival-type atmosphere.
“We are coming up with the idea of a canopy structure,” she said. “Something that can be used year-round, possibly with some wind break elements stuff to it and maybe some storage area and bathroom facility but it would still be an open air market.”
Parker said it would expand the area currently used and it could be used for other activities. The designs are currently being developed by an architect.
Home Run Sponsor
The Escanaba Downtown Development Authority has agreed to sponsor the annual Bay de Noc Home Run event that will take place this year on Saturday, May 24.
It benefits the Delta County Coalition Against Homelessness. DDA Director Ed Legault said they hope the event will grow into a major activity in the downtown.
“It’s a good opportunity that I think long term it will attract runners from all over and certainly if you add a prize money element to it we can get many people from outside the area. It would be great to show them Escanaba and hopefully have them come back for many of our other festivals or activities,” Legault said.
The DDA is sponsoring the event for $5,000. Legault said it’s an effort to grow the prize money.
You can go to baydenochomerun.org to register.