Letter: It’s Time to Do More for Downtown Businesses

Why the hell isn’t the┬áCity of Minot doing any kind of “Shop our Downtown” advertising? Come on, people! I’m sick and tired of watching our local businesses slowly waste away from this construction disease! We are going to lose these places if something isn’t done, and soon. These small businesses have been fighting the good fight since 2013. Most have already had to cut hours, let people go, or both just to stay afloat. A few gems have already been lost. My heart is breaking for our city due to the seeming lack of empathy and support from residents and the overall general complacency of our city leaders. Please prove these observations wrong. I double dare you! No! I triple dog dare you!

I have heard people say, “I love downtown but, I’m going to wait until the construction is finished before I go back.” and “It’s too stressful to find parking.” Well, guess what? If people wait until the construction is finished there will be no shops. Also, this is recent good news to me, but parking is no longer an excuse. One of the two infamous parking garages IS OPEN! This would be a great thing to advertise on local news outlets. It would also be a great utilization of the public relations portion of the construction budget. Hear that? No extra money needed or asked for because, it’s already there. I’m hoping I’m being a little preemptive on this letter. I really hope to turn on my tv and hear an ad tomorrow. However, I’m more of an optimistic-realist and I’ll probably have to put a “Honk if you heard you can park downtown again” sign on my car to get the word out.

What can we do about this issue? If everyone that reads this does one small thing, together we can make a huge difference! Mother’s Day is right around the corner and downtown is the perfect place for some unique gifts. There is the perfect store for every type of Mom. A book from Main Street Books. Or some beautiful jewelry from Art Main. Maybe you should get her a CD from Budget Music! If they don’t have it it can be ordered and usually arrives in a day or two. Then you won’t how to teach her to use iTunes on the iPad! Win! Beautiful cards and gorgeous knick-knacks can be found at Maggie’s Gifts! The Gourmet Chef has cooking classes and lots of fun kitchen stuff! Gift certificates are available at any of the eateries. 62 Doors Gallery has an array of original art for sale. Be a multi-tasker, buy a painting and feed an artist! Stop and have a beer at the Tap Room or a glass of wine at Off the Vine, because you deserve it. Everyone should really check out Original Comics, super cool things in there! I could go on and name an item in every store but, you need to go and look around yourself. The businesses need you to come and look yourself.

Downtown is going to be beautiful once this construction is all done. What good is that if it’s empty? Show me the local spirit and determination that made me fall in love with this community and state. I can’t wait to see what you can make happen! Or if you have an idea, make your voice heard! Do a little thing, do a lot of good!!

3 comments on “Letter: It’s Time to Do More for Downtown Businesses

Taylor Ulch

Thank you for this article! I had a vague inkling that the parking garage was open, and I too have been frustrated at the complete lack of action of the city to publicize this more. The garage hardly even LOOKS open to anyone who would happen to drive by! I hope another summer long of endless construction and delays isn’t suffered by the hard working local shops before the city gets itself into gear!

Brian Reile

Do more for downtown Minot. Are you kidding? Downtown Minot received an 18 million grant for construction and by the time the ramps are done another 18 million in flood money. I don’t recall any downtown merchants being flooded.

Sandy Hofer

It’s not the stores/business themselves that have received any project money that I am aware of. Yes, they are revitalizing the streets and sidewalks and making the area beautiful. That will be beneficial to the places that can remain open by the time this is all over. I’m trying to bring attention to the more personal side of this. Not just the people that own the buildings on that land but, the people that are trying to make their livings out of that area. Some of the businesses did get flooded. I worked side by side sandbagging and moving goods with business owners that were evacuating. Some of these people had houses that were already flooded AND sewer back ups or flooding at their businesses.

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