National Main Street Now Conference to Showcase Milwaukee, WI Community Development Successes

The 2016 Main Street Now conference is scheduled to be held May 23-25 in Milwaukee, WI. It is being organized in partnership by the National Main Street Center and the Wisconsin Economic Development Corporation (WEDC).

Main Street Now Conference

Photo – preservationnation.org

Main Street Now is the largest nationwide gathering of commercial district revitalization professionals in the United States. This year, the event is expected to draw more than 1,500 participants to Milwaukee, including Main Street directors, volunteers, architects, planners and consultants.

The conference will focus on challenges facing 21st century downtowns and commercial districts, while also tapping audience perspectives on community development opportunities. Attendees will learn about topics ranging from creating measurable economic impact to placemaking, the arts, and everything in between.

The conference agenda includes a range of educational sessions and two special training sessions. One of these is a one-day Main Street Preservation Short Course in which the National Park Service and the National Alliance of Preservation Commissions will show you how Main Streets can take advantage of their historic assets to drive community development.

The other one is a special pre-conference training for new Main Street Directors led by National Main Street Center staff and seasoned Main Streeters. This session will take a closer look at the value of the Main Street Approach, provide practical tips on being an effective and impactful leader, and discuss some of the common challenges new Directors face.

The Main Street Expo, to be held this year at the Wisconsin Center in Milwaukee, is the place to find information, products, and services that can take local revitalization efforts to the next level.

While Milwaukee will serve as the primary location for the conference, other area communities will also share the spotlight. WEDC has worked with the National Main Street Center to organize mobile workshops for attendees to Fond du Lac, Sheboygan, Ozaukee, Rock, Racine and Dane Counties, as well as several Milwaukee economic and community development successess.

WEDC Secretary and CEO Mark Hogan said in a release that “Being selected as a co-host of this prestigious Main Street event speaks to Wisconsin’s national leadership in developing and implementing strategies that create and sustain vibrant downtowns and commercial districts.”

Darrin Wasniewski, downtown development program manager with WEDC, added that “Wisconsin is widely recognized for its innovative approaches to encouraging social connections between community residents through well planned, maintained and programmed spaces.”

Early-bird registration for the Main Street Now conference runs through February 29, with a final registration deadline of May 19.

What: 2016 Main Street Now Conference

When: May 23-25, 2016

Where: Milwaukee, WI

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