(DES MOINES) The 27th annual Main Street Iowa Awards celebration was held Friday in Des Moines.
Competitive nominations were submitted for 105 projects and 26 were selected for awards. Six received honorable mention. Governor Terry Branstad and Lt. Governor Kim Reynolds presented the honors. Main Street Volunteer of the Year awards were presented to 47 individuals or couples who were selected by their community for outstanding dedication and volunteer service benefiting the local Main Street Program.
During the event, eight communities were recognized for reaching significant benchmarks based on private dollar investments made in the purchase and revitalization of properties within their respective commercial districts. Belle Plaine was recognized for reaching the $2 million benchmark in the last year, with Dunlap honored for $3 million in local investment. Greenfield and New Hampton were awarded certificates for $5 million in local investment; and Le Mars was recognized for achieving the $10 million benchmark. Cedar Rapids’ Czech Village/New Bohemia, Davenport’s Hilltop Campus Village and Mason City all attained $20 million in local investment since the program’s inception in 1986. The new Main Street organization in Marion was recognized and welcomed into the program; and New Hampton received recognition for their 20 years of participation as a designated Main Street community.
As a highlight of the evening, two special awards were presented. The “Spirit of Main Street” Award recognizes the person, organization, community or project that best demonstrates the true meaning and spirit of “Main Street at work.” Living this spirit is the difference between interest and commitment, between mediocrity and excellence. This year’s “Spirit of Main Street” Award winner is Dan Tindall. Main Street Iowa honored the community of Belle Plaine for their Downtown Revitalization Streetscape & Façade Master Plan as the “Signature Project of the Year.” This award honors a project that rises above traditional award categories in impact, emotion and significance.