THE POST-SIGNAL / Desiray Seaux
The Rotary Club of Crowley recently welcomed Claire Doré, center, as guest speaker and Rotarian Danny de la Nuez, right, as vocational speaker. Welcoming them to the meeting is President Michael Doughty.
Crowley Main Street updates Rotary Club
The Rotary Club of Crowley welcomed Claire Doré as their guest speaker and Rotarian Danny de la Nuez as the vocational speaker during its weekly luncheon meeting.
Doré, the Programming and Outreach Librarian at the Acadia Parish Library and board member of the Crowley Main Street Program, updated the club on the Main Street Program and how the COVID-19 has impacted the organization.
Doré spoke about the initiatives that the organization is taking to promote businesses in the historic downtown area.
“Taking inspiration from the Acadia Parish Library’s new digital programming initiative, Crowley Main Street has taken on the task of creating and producing videos highlighting Main Street businesses,” Doré said. “The series is entitled ‘Crowley Main Street Alive!’
“The program kicked off Monday of this week, with a video highlighting the Redbird Vintage Market, a downtown marketplace featuring antiques and vintage items.”
She said Crowley Main Street hopes this series of videos helps to promote the downtown to both citizens of Crowley and those from other cities who are perhaps looking to travel to Crowley.
Doré said CMS has a tentative date booked for the second Art and Wine Walk — Oct. 16.
Doré then shifted the topic to grants received or planned for the community. Those include:
• A grant from First National Bank: She said CMS hopes to use a portion of the grant to set aside funds to provide a mini facade grant. Details of this grant are to be announced as they become available.
• Louisiana Main Street: “We are using this grant to develop a website which will promote Crowley’s Historic Main Street,” Doré said. “Shops, restaurants and business will be promoted on our website as well as materials such as grant applications, applications to be vendors at our events, etc.”
• CMS has three grant applicants hoping to gain Louisiana Main Street restoration grants for their buildings downtown, according to Doré — two of these grant applications are for facade grants, one is for interior renovations.
• The HartBeat of America grant: Through the Main Street of America Program, applications may be filled out until Aug. 2 at 11:59 p.m. This grant intends to aid Main Street business owners who have been impacted by Covid-19.
Crowley Main Street has assisted downtown Crowley businesses in securing over 19 grants through the course of it’s existence.
“Unfortunately, CMS has been negatively impacted by Covid,” Doré said. “Main Street Manager Charlotte Jeffers was among those who was laid off from Crowley City Hall due to budget cuts prompted by the Covid crisis. Main Street manager is an important role in the Main Street organization as the manager is the coordinating point between the city and organization.
“The Main Street manager handles many things such as organization of documents to be looked over by city officials — such as grant applications — and coordinating Main Street events.”
Doré explained that Jeffers is continuing to volunteer as an advisor with the organization “to help keep us on track, even though she is no longer officially the manager.”
A number of Main Street-sponsored events have been canceled over the last few months, including the Rice City Car and Antique Tractor Show, The Art and Wine Walk (postponed) and Kids Day.
“CMS events are the main fundraiser for Crowley Main Street to be able to continue it’s mission and without revenue the organization may struggle to survive,” Doré said.