Downtown Digest

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With the days growing longer and the sun still shining at 4 pm, it’s time for the Old Town Kemptville BIA to think about our programming for the year ahead. This year promises to be an even more memorable year for events and promotions in Downtown Kemptville.

Some of our confirmed events and promotions for the coming year will be:

Easter Bunny Hop – Saturday April 4th from 10am-2pm.
Not Just Ladies Night – “Wealth & Wellness” – Friday May 1st from 6pm to 9pm.
Kemptville Live Festival Fan Discount Promotion – July 2020.
Kemptville Live VIP Passes Giveaway – July 2020.
Not Just Ladies Night – September 2020.
Kreepy Kemptville – October 31, 2020.
Old Town Kemptville Christmas – TBA November 2020 (same day as Kinsmen Santa Claus Parade).
12 Days of Christmas – December 2020.

Our programming is essential to attracting visitors to the downtown area in order to create the conditions for our businesses and organizations to prosper and grow. This critical element of what our Old Town Kemptville BIA does has been evolving starting in 2019 and continues. A few of our members expressed that our traditional “trick or treating”-style of events have not quite had as much of a positive impact on their individual businesses and organizations as they were hoping. This is also due partially to the diversity of business types in the downtown, including a number of non-traditional storefront businesses and organizations. Though many of our BIA family members see direct benefit from these events, we agreed that we can do more to be inclusive of all of the different types of businesses in the downtown. As a result, we’ve introduced new programming to target different demographics and age groups to encourage a more diverse range of people to explore what downtown has to offer.

Another way that we are evolving in our programming is to encourage and create the conditions for “activations” to take place. Activations are smaller activities that require less resources (volunteer time and money) and are created & organized by the local businesses and organizations themselves. This permits the BIA (and its limited resources) to take on a secondary supporting role instead of consistently being the primary organizing and financing force. It also encourages more BIA members to get involved in downtown activities by allowing them the space to create their own events and promotions. Some of these activations to date include: “Wellness In the Park”, “Trivia Night” and the most recent “Pancake Flippin’ Relay Race”. Though smaller in scale, make no mistake, these events have a very meaningful impact on both visitors and participants alike.

There’s a special event coming up on the calendar for Sunday March 29, 2020 from 3 pm to 6 pm at Salamanders restaurant. Some of you may know that the owners of Geronimo Coffee House, Terri and Lee have sold their business and the new owners take over possession on April 1st. In a short period of time, Terri and Lee have become an integral part of our Downtown community. Their support of BIA events and promotions, support of local community organizations and their compassionate approach to building their business has touched many people. Please join us in wishing them the very best in their future endeavours at this meet & greet style event.

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