Rita Edwards | Sulphur Springs Downtown Business Alliance President

Do you remember Duke & Ayers the “Dime Store”? How about Carothers Bros., or Marshalls? I was telling some people at the Car Show Saturday about the variety of retail stores that used to be on and around the square and found myself getting a little depressed. But, then I decided to get busy instead. 

The Sulphur Springs Downtown Business Alliance has a big job ahead of us, but make no mistake, we are up to the challenge. We must first get the word out, and I think we made headway Saturday. The Car Show was a huge success. Not only did we have a great turnout of cars and trucks, but we had a large number of spectators. We had entries from Irving, Dallas, Rowlett, College Station, Sunnyvale, Red Oak, Mount Vernon, Greenville, Emory, Yantis, and of course Sulphur Springs, with a total of 45 entries. But what I found amazing was the people here spectating from Dallas, Brownsboro, Forney, Royse City, Quitman, Richardson and Greenville!

Everyone was allowed to vote on their favorite vehicle, and on that ballot were some questions. The results from those questions were very exciting in that everyone said they would come back next year, and most of them visited the stores and/or restaurants. So we definitely achieved our primary goal of awareness.

Several of the people I met Saturday found our downtown very charming and expressed their support in what the Downtown Business Alliance is striving for. I received several “atta girls” for the Alliance from local business owners and concerned citizens. They also expressed interest in joining our crusade, so I think we hit the trifecta! We brought in folks from out of town, increased foot traffic in our businesses, and increased our membership.

Now we have to get behind the city and the Revitalization Board in their efforts to establish guidelines for property owners, both retail and residential, to be designated as historical. Once these guidelines have been finalized and approved, a property owner will have a smoother, quicker and better-defined avenue to restore their property. Members of the Downtown Business Alliance will be present at each City Council, Tourism Board and Revitalization Board meeting to stay informed and represent the downtown area.

So, if you would like to be involved, go to our website at www.ssdba.org and contact any member about membership 

Until next time, keep asking, “What’s new downtown?”

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