Downtown Lee’s Summit Selected Among Top 25 Main Streets in National Contest

Support Downtown Lee’s Summit by Voting Today

The national small business movement, Independent We Stand, announces the quarterfinalists, including Downtown Lee’s Summit, in the 2017 “America’s Main Streets” contest. As the lifeblood of our cities and towns, Main Streets play an important role in the long-term success of communities and help build a sense of place. Independent We Stand invites the public to vote for their favorite quarterfinalist and move a deserving Main Street one step closer to the grand prize of $25,000.

Downtown Lee’s Summit Main Street was founded in 1989 by a group of visionary business, civic and city leaders to revitalize the heart of their community. At the time, there were 19 empty storefronts and a cycle of disinvestment. Today, Downtown Lee’s Summit Main Street hosts over 100 days of community events, drawing hundreds of thousands of people each year to a now thriving and vibrant downtown that is home to over 100 locally-owned businesses. Volunteers donate thousands of service hours each year to help ensure that Downtown Lee’s Summit continues to serve as the business and cultural hub of the community and a premier destination for entertainment and shopping in the Kansas City metro.

“The ‘America’s Main Streets’ contest is the perfect opportunity to highlight how important Downtown Lee’s Summit Main Street is to our community,” stated Donnie Rodgers, Jr., Executive Director of Downtown Lee’s Summit Main Street, Inc. “We’ve come such a long way in the last 28 years, from over 19 vacant storefronts in 1989 to nearly 100% occupancy today. It wouldn’t be possible without our amazing volunteers, business owners, and the unwavering support from our community. We are truly honored to be named one of the best Main Streets in America and hope that we can serve as an example to others of the awesome power of the Main Street Approach® in transforming the heart of our community.”

More than 156,000 votes were cast for 242 nominees during the nominations phase of the contest. The quarterfinalists in alphabetical order are:

  • Berlin Main Street | Berlin, MD
  • Bridge Street | Ashtabula, OH
  • Brookhaven Main Street | Brookhaven, MS
  • Coventry Village | Cleveland Heights, OH
  • Destination Downtown Lancaster | Lancaster, OH
  • Downtown Haddonfield | Haddonfield, NJ
  • Downtown Lee’s Summit | Lee’s Summit, MO
  • Downtown Main Street, Red Wing | Red Wing, MN
  • Downtown Northfield | Northfield, MN
  • Downtown Oxford | Oxford, PA
  • Downtown Plano Arts District | Plano, TX
  • Downtown Rochester | Rochester, MI
  • Downtown Shakopee | Shakopee, MN
  • Elizabeth City Downtown | Elizabeth City, MN
  • Ellicott City Main Street | Ellicott City, MD
  • Hayward Main Street | Hayward, WI
  • Historic Downtown McKinney | McKinney, TX
  • La Grange Kentucky Main Street | La Grange, KY
  • Main Street & Downtown Wellsboro | Wellsboro, PA
  • Main Street DeLand | DeLand, FL
  • Main Street Maple Shade | Maple Shade, NJ
  • Main Street Medina | Medina, OH
  • John Front Street | St. John, WA
  • Sykesville Main Street | Sykesville, MD
  • Westerly, Rhode Island | Westerly, RI

Quarterfinalist voting begins May 1 at and runs through May 28.

The top 10 semifinalists will be announced on May 29 and the winner of the 2017 “America’s Main Streets” contest will be announced June 5, followed by a “Main Streets Make Us Better” celebration on the Fourth of July, when the winner will announce how the prize money will be utilized.

Contest prizes include:

  • $25,000 grand prize
  • STIHL Equipment Certificate for $1,000 worth of STIHL equipment, good at any STIHL dealer in the U.S.
  • Do it Best Corp. $500 shopping spree
  • PPG Pittsburgh Paints $500 shopping spree
  • SnapRetail $1,300 subscription package
  • Public relations and social media recognition
  • Alignable small business social media “Neighborhood” on the site
  • Special plaque for winner to proudly display



To reach DLSMS Executive Director Donnie Rodgers Jr.:
To reach DLSMS Assistant Director Ashley Nowell:
To reach DLSMS Events & Promotions Director Julie Cook:
To reach DLSMS Communications Coordinator Jen Steller:
Or call 816-246-6598. High-resolution photos and logos available upon request.

You may use promotional video and b-roll at these links both online or in broadcasts:

Downtown Lee’s Summit Main Street, Inc. is a nationally-recognized and accredited 501c3 nonprofit organization dedicated to the revitalization of Downtown Lee’s Summit. Founded in 1989, DLSMS implements the National Trust Main Street Center Four-Point Approach® to commercial district revitalization. DLSMS is a multiple state and national award-winner for excellence in downtown revitalization, including the 2010 Great American Main Street Award®, which the National Trust Main Street Center gives to only five communities across the nation every year.

Rich in history, Downtown Lee’s Summit is listed on the National Register of Historic Places. Its strong ties to the railroad continue to this day — visitors can hop on a passenger train and arrive at the Amtrak station in Downtown Lee’s Summit for a memorable trip. With more than 50 distinctive retail shops, and many restaurants and bars ranging from upscale to laid-back, Downtown Lee’s Summit is an eclectic and fun place to visit. Residential lofts and adjacent historic neighborhoods also make Downtown Lee’s Summit an exceptional place to call home. A unique combination of preservation of history and place, with progressive attitudes and entrepreneurship, make Downtown Lee’s Summit a great place to live, shop, eat and play.

Independent We Stand is a nationwide movement of independent small business owners whose mission is to inspire other small business owners to better understand and celebrate their locally-owned status while educating consumers about the importance and strong economic benefits of supporting them. The Independent We Stand movement is sponsored by STIHL Inc. Supporting sponsors include Alignable, Do it Best Corp., North American Retail Hardware Association, PPG Pittsburgh Paints, and SnapRetail.

STIHL Inc,. America’s number one selling brand of gasoline-powered handheld outdoor power equipment, is the founding sponsor of Independent We Stand and the presenting sponsor of “America’s Main Streets” contest. The company follows a unique distribution strategy in the handheld outdoor power equipment industry, choosing never to sell products at big box stores, but instead remaining loyal to its 9,000+ independent servicing dealers nationwide.


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