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Janie Dennison

On Friday, March 27, 2020, the President signed into law the CARES Act, which contains $376 billion in relief for American workers and small businesses.

Mornings on Main free webinar will feature a U.S. Small Business Administration Lender Relations Specialist on Wednesday April 8, 2020. The webinar will begin at 8:30AM and will allow for a question & answer segment from 9:00AM - 9:30AM.

There is no need to register ahead of time. 
Please join the webinar from your computer, tablet or smartphone.

You can also dial in using your phone.
United States: (646) 749-3112
Access Code: 298-614-957

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COVID-19 Impact on Missouri Small Businesses

Missouri Main Street Connection and the National Main Street Center are seeking information from small businesses in Missouri. We want to collect a little bit more information to help understand the issues and challenges Missouri small businesses are currently facing. Your response will help us to better assist you, guide resources, and provide programming in the future. There are two, short surveys for you to complete.

These surveys work together so it is important that you complete both. 
Access both surveys here. 

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Online Resource Outlet: https://www.momainstreet.org/COVID19-RESOURCES/

Register for Mornings On Main: 

Join Facebook Group "Downtown Chat": 

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Missouri Main Street Connection is making plans to celebrate Preservation Month in May 2020. Many of our communities will have special events to highlight historic sites in their area and are planning other celebrations to show their enthusiasm for preservation.

MMSC Staff, local Main Street Executive Directors, Board members, and preservation representatives will be going on tour with our road show to visit selected sites and communities featured on our Preservation Calendar of Events.


Download The Preservation Month Brochure


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The Evening of Excellence will be the finale of “Get Plugged In…Downtown” Conference on July 30, 2020. The awards ceremony and dinner will send everyone home from this premier Main Street conference with new inspiration. Some will even carry an Excellence of Achievement award home. This might be your community. The award nominations are an opportunity for YOU to honor the people, projects, and activities that are outstanding achievements in your community.

Nominations will be accepted through May 1, 2020. 


Download The Nomination From

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Missouri Main Street Connection Inc, (MMSC) hosted Main Street Capitol Day in Jefferson City, MO on January 27, 2020. The annual event gathered communities across the state to visit with legislators to celebrate the achievements by communities participating in the Missouri Main Street state-wide revitalization program. Members of Main Street organizations throughout the state attended to share information and insight with the legislators about the impact Main Street has had on their communities. MMSC has advanced economic and workforce development in both Main Street communities and the entire state of Missouri.

Missouri Main Street Connection is a non-profit designed to help communities preserve their historic commercial districts through economic revitalization. MMSC has empowered downtown revitalization in Missouri communities since 2006, resulting in $964 million of private and public investments, the creation of 829 net new businesses, and the development of 4,097 net new jobs in Main Street communities.

State Director, Gayla Roten noted, “Missouri Main Street communities have a lot to be proud of as they work to revitalize their downtowns. Main Street Capitol Day is our opportunity to showcase our impact to the legislators, especially those whose districts are represented by our Main Street communities.”

Missouri Main Street Connection is a statewide program currently providing services and training to over 140 communities across the state. MMSC offers education and mentoring in downtown revitalization strategies using the Main Street Four-Point Approach® to revitalization as developed by the National Trust for Historic Preservation. The approach is a comprehensive methodology addressing all components of revitalization including organization, design, economic vitality and promotions, all within the context of historic preservation.


MMSC Board Vice President Bob Lewis, Board President Dr. Steven Hoffman, State Director Gayla Roten, Senator Mike Cierpiot, Pam Buck - Downtown Blue Springs, and Donnie Rodgers - Downtown Lee's Summit


Jill Purvis - Warrensburg Main Street, Senator Denny Hoskins, Pam Jarding - Main Street Chillicothe and Katelyn Brotherton - MMSC


Liz Haynes - Old Town Cape Girardeau, Senator Wayne Wallingford, Katelyn Brotherton - MMSC


Senator Jamilah Nasheed with David Ottinger - Bevo, John Chen - Downtown Dutchtown, and Keith Winge - MMSC


Dr. Steven Hoffman - MMSC Board President, Gayla Roten - State Director, Bob Lewis - MMSC Vice President, and Representative Hannah Kelly


Ben White - MMSC, Cassidy Lowery - Downtown Washington, Representative Aaron Griesheimer, and Tyler King - Downtown Washington

Dr. Steven Hoffman - MMSC Board President, Representative Scott Cupps, Gayla Roten - State Director, Bob Lewis - MMSC Vist President


Keith Winge - MMSC, Representative Jeff Coleman, and Pam Buck - Downtown Blue Springs


Representative Donna Baringer with John Chen - Downtown Dutchtown, David Ottinger - Bevo, and Keith Winge - MMSC


Tom Elliott - Historic Tanglefoot Association with Representative Becky Ruth


Jill Purvis - Warrensburg Main Street with Representative Dan Houx


Keith Winge - MMSC, Lori Haun - Downtown Joplin Alliance, and Representative Lane Roberts

To view all the photos check them out on our facebook here.
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The first year of the My Community Matters grant work provided by Missouri Main Street Connection (MMSC) has been productive for the targeted communities of the program.  The ten communities receiving services through the My Community Matters initiative are Brunswick, Butler, Concordia, Kirksville, Knob Noster, Odessa, Monroe City, Rockaway Beach, Sikeston, and Willow Springs. All ten communities have been visited at least once by MMSC staff and consultants with services tailored to their community and revitalization work.

The My Community Matters Initiative is provided by MMSC in partnership with USDA through their Rural Community Development Initiative grant. The initiative provides services, over two years, centered around the four points of the Main Street Approach and how it can further impact these communities that are relatively new to the Main Street methodology.

Mindy Hays with Downtown Monroe City (DTMC) said, “The level of support and expertise DTMC has received through the My Community Matters Grant and our partnership with Missouri Main Street has been instrumental in our success! The framework and guidance they provide is what will help us be successful not only now, but long term."

In 2019, evaluation and educational work was performed in the community and examined the economic activity of each using demographic and assessment data to help them better understand their dynamics from an economic perspective.  This type of assessment is beneficial to the decision-making process needed for downtown revitalization. It helps the community understand the business needs their citizens leave the community for and gives them guidance for what types of businesses that could be successful in their downtown.


(Jim Thompson presenting in Butler, MO.)

This year services focused on the design and promotion points of the Main Street Four-Point Approach.  Randy Wilson, architect for South Carolina Main Street and Community Design Solutions, along with Ben Muldrow, Partner at Arnett Muldrow, brought their expertise to Missouri.  MMSC provided not only design services to the communities, but the service also included streetscape renderings in each community. These visuals were great in getting the Main Street organization excited to begin work on rehabilitating their historic buildings and downtown. Additionally, these images are a helpful tool to get more community members involved in the Main Street organization when they can easily see the impact the organization can make downtown.


(Streetscape rendering of downtown Monroe City, MO.)

(Façade rendering for Monroe City, MO.)

You can read the complete Design Report which includes other renderings of downtown Monroe City and suggestions for downtown revitalization through this link:


MMSC provided promotion training and a branding system for the downtown and community to utilize in telling their unique story. The branding helps tell a cohesive story of Rockaway Beach to both citizens and visitors showcasing the many assets that can be found there and presenting the community as a destination. Here are some examples from Rockaway Beach: 




The communities that participated felt that the tools provided would help them motivate and inspire the whole community in the downtown revitalization efforts. Additional services in 2020 will include entrepreneurial and organization training for the Main Street Board of Directors in each community.


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Iowa Community Expedition


Last week, Missouri Main Street Connection had the opportunity to take Missouri Executive Directors and other community representatives on the Iowa Community Expedition. They were able to visit five different Iowa communities and learned valuable lessons at each stop. The five communities were Ottumwa, Oskaloosa, Downtown Des Moines East Village, Valley Junction, and Centerville. MMSC was grateful for the hospitality we received at each of these communities. It made for an incredible learning experience! #MainStreetOnTheRoad


Ottumwa, Iowa

Comments from our Directors about what they learned or were inspired by in Ottumwa:

  • "We want to create more events that will bring minorities downtown."
  • "I met a lot of inspiring people that lead their Main Street in a small town."
  • "Top Hats supporting a soup kitchen in the back of their business. We were inspired to give back more to the local community."  
  • The use of planters.
  • Green roofs.
  • "The back entrances were welcoming and I would love to take that back to my community."

Oskaloosa, Iowa

Comments from our Directors about what they learned or were inspired by in Oskaloosa:

  • Small whimsical touches.
  • "I want to name our alleys."
  • Amazing upper story living. 
  • Planters wrapped with historic photos. 

Valley Junction, Iowa

Comments from our Directors about what they learned or were inspired by in Valley Junction:

  • "I loved the Valley Junction Arch found in downtown."
  • "The cool signage as a result of a grant program."
  • "The stores were unique and I found connections to keep in contact with to use for future events." 
  • "Digital signage in a store to share promotions and community events."

Centerville, Iowa

Comments from our Directors about what they learned or were inspired by in Centerville:

  • "We learned about the purple cow and we believe we found ours!"
  • The wide variety of businesses downtown.
  • Using numbers in downtown decisions.
  • The above and beyond hospitality and kindness. 

Gayla Roten said, "I'm excited to be able to bring Executive Directors on this Community Expedition. We look forward to be able to do this again so that Missouri Main Streets are able to visit other communities to continue to be inspired and thrive." 

To view more photos please visit: https://www.facebook.com/MissouriMainStreetConnection

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Friday, November 8, 2019
Moberly, MO

Nearly everyone has a much-needed redevelopment project, big or small, in their downtown district. Learn ways to match those preservation projects with local investment and tools that will contribute to the development in your community. This session will take you through the steps of local development including how to identify and implement historic preservation projects for adaptive reuse of historic properties, possible tax credit projects, funding options, historic preservation grants, creative matches, and more. Presenters will have case studies to show the process and help find creative solutions to problems and concerns. They will also share successes, tips, and tools to help you avoid some of the pitfalls of historic preservation. Understand redevelopment using state historic tax credits and how Missouri not-for-profits and local governments can redevelop historic buildings using state tax credits. These are all important aspects of creating an environment that promotes redevelopment. The last hour of this session will be a panel discussion with all presenters – come prepared to ask questions about your own building preservation needs. 


Register Online Here: https://www.momainstreet.org//Programs.aspx?PID=58

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Friday, September 13, 2019

Jefferson City, MO

For many communities, our small businesses are working truly at an “independent” level, trying their best to succeed and in some cases, to just stay afloat without an active support system in place to help them address needs and market opportunities.

While overall economic development efforts in communities of all sizes don’t always include attention and support to small businesses and even more specifically, to mom & pops, Main Street is all about strengthening our existing local economy by supporting our downtown entrepreneurs.

From developing retail promotions that work, to cutting-edge tools that add understanding on trends and best practices, this session will highlight important strategies to not only position your Main Street program as a valuable partner, but consciously build a strong supportive environment for the success of our downtown entrepreneurs.


Register Online Here: https://www.momainstreet.org//Programs.aspx?PID=56

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