Bedford’s arts-and-antiques strategy to give Centertown a retail identity builds on the community’s existing assets–the entrepreneurs who have establisthed retail and restaurant businesses in the district.
Earlier this month Lynchburg’s News and Advance featured the district in a story, “Downtown Bedford venues add life to arts scene“, profiling artists at work at the Electric Company studio spaces, diners at the Artisan Cafe, and the gallery of Goose Creek Studio.
It also talked strategy, one that includes billboards and participation in a regional arts tourism campaign to lure drivers from nearby US 460, a series of Second Friday events bringing consistent after-hours activity, and the development of a mural near the center of the district.
Bedford Main Street committees and board members have been central to the work of developing a strategic framework that encourages creative and entrepreneurial merchant participation. Efforts like this build over time and only with the energy of individual leaders, but this historic commercial district is building some momentum. Visit Bedford to see what emerges next.