Seymour Main Street celebrates 25-year anniversary


Thursday marked the 25th year of Seymour Main Street promoting businesses and preserving historic buildings.

Some of its previous projects were done at Rails Craft Brew and Eatery, M and M Office Products and CPR Cell Phone Repair.

In the past five years, 25 businesses have been added to the downtown area.

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Executive Director Becky Schepman said one of the nonprofit organization’s main goals is to “create a community people want to live in.”

“When they look at a community, they want to know that you have a cool and vibrant downtown, a place that you can walk, a place that you can shop, a place that you can do stuff, and we have that,” she said.

Schepman said it has been difficult to change people’s view of downtown.

“We’ve worked really hard to try to get people to drink the Kool-Aid and think downtown is cool. Hopefully, we’re getting there,” she said.

Schepman said one way she is going about that is with a social media campaign, showing off everything the downtown area has to offer.

“Love where you live, we’re using that hashtag a lot. Hopefully, you’re seeing it out there — a huge social media campaign through Facebook and Instagram, LinkedIn, YouTube, text alerts, e-blast,” she said. “We’re trying to get to people in every way, and hopefully, that’s working.”

The anniversary was celebrated with a gathering of Seymour Main Street members at 105 W. Second St.

The building was renovated by its owner, Karen Grindlay, and Schepman said they chose to hold the event there to show the progress of the project.

“Holding the event here is a great way to show off a building that has a lot of potential and really highlights what we do here at Main Street — saving these buildings, repurposing these buildings to do something different and give life to the downtown,” she said.

For 2020 plans, Schepman said another mural, similar to the one of John Mellencamp located on the east wall of This Old Guitar Music Store at 106 W. Second St., is being planned for the downtown.

She also said a new park is being built downtown. It is scheduled to be completed in June but may be finished sooner.

Seymour Main Street also will expand upon other events such as Soak up the Suds and Ghouls and Goblets. Trying to improve some alleyways and increase promotion, including signage on Interstate 65 promoting the downtown area, are planned, too.

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