Jefferson City downtown group elects new officers

Posted on Tuesday, May 7, 2013 at 8:51 am

 The Historic Mossy Creek District Board of Directors is continuing to work to revitalize downtown Jefferson City in collaboration with the Jefferson County Chamber of Commerce and local city government.

 The non-profit organization recently elected new officers who will provide leadership for the efforts to move a plan forward that proposes to add a new festival area, expanded pedestrian access and general aesthetic improvements to the aging district.

 The newly elected officers are Michael Evon, re-elected to serve an additional term as President; LeAnn Sutton, Vice President; Carolyn Blevins, Secretary and Carla Hickey, Treasurer.

 In just two short years the group has accomplished a lot, including adding events like the Downtown Cruise-In, Mossy Creek Farmers Market, The Regional Firehouse Chili Cook-Off and expanding city festivities through Jefferson City’s Hometown Christmas events, which drew large crowds last year for a week long Christmas celebration. The group has also been developing a branding strategy that includes a new logo, website and banners in support of a larger master plan that could bring new life to the old downtown.

 A few years ago, the poor state of the downtown was listed as a top concern for future economic development in the city by the “Building a Better Future” visioning process conducted by the Jefferson County Chamber of Commerce.

 Since the summer of 2011 a nonprofit group has been developed and is diligently working to foster a better environment in the downtown by offering events, marketing strategies, business support, and developing a new architectural master plan that will work to make the district a public gathering spot and to solve issues with connectivity to the downtown.

 Michael Evon, President of the organization, hopes that their efforts will encourage property owners and others to get more involved in finding a solution to address the dilapidation in the downtown.

 “We aren’t working on this plan because we are living in the past, we are working on this plan because we are looking toward the future,” Evon said. “The problems in the downtown aren’t going anywhere. They are only going to get worse, unless we find a way to deal with them. The poor conditions in the downtown will continue to lower property values, discourage development and be an area of concern for residents until we get a plan in place that makes a difference.”

 The newly revised master plan for the Historic Mossy Creek District is available online and copies can be requested from the board. For more information or to get involved contact 865-471-0782 or visit the website www.OldMossyCreek.com.

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