Downtown Lee’s Summit Main Street is pleased to announce the start of their new gift card program, just in time for the 2016 holiday season. The new gift card will be accepted at more than 50 downtown Lee’s Summit businesses and restaurants.
“As more people recognized the value of shopping local, we’re excited to offer this new gift card program. We hope it will help keep more money local this holiday season,” states Donnie Rodgers, executive director of Downtown Lee’s Summit Main Street, “Gift cards sold during the holiday season will help bring more people downtown after the holidays, which is generally slower for retail and restaurants nationwide.”
“I love that this is truly a gift people can give from the heart that supports our downtown. We hope to see new and familiar faces downtown come January treating themselves to that special gift or great meal from the gift card they received during the holidays,” states Amy Tominia Robertson, owner of Cameron’s Home Furnishings and board secretary for the Downtown Lee’s Summit Community Improvement District.
Gift cards will be available for purchase online at www.downtownls.org/giftcard and in person Monday-Friday 9:00 a.m. to 5:30 p.m. at the Downtown Lee’s Summit Main Street office at 13 SE Third Street.
The National Retail Federation 2015 survey found that almost three-quarters of respondents were planning to buy at least one gift card during the holiday season and that gift cards, for the ninth year in a row, remained the most requested gift. (https://nrf.com/media/press-releases/early-promos-great-deals-put-traditional-gift-card-buyers-gift-wrapping-mode )
The program will be administered by StoreFinancial, an international payment systems processor based in Overland Park, Kansas. StoreFinancial offers a comprehensive turnkey gift card program to shopping centers and downtowns around the world. The gift card program is a closed system, whereby 100% of all gift card sales can only be spent within Downtown Lee’s Summit.
The Downtown Lee’s Summit Gift Card program is one of the many projects led by Downtown Lee’s Summit Main Street to promote, enhance and preserve the heart of Lee’s Summit. It was made possible by the financial support of the Downtown Lee’s Summit Community Improvement District.
2016 Downtown Lee’s Summit Holiday Schedule:
October 29: Boos Barks and Badges Halloween Parade
November 4-5: Holiday Open House
November 18: Mayor’s Tree Lighting
November 26: Small Business Saturday
December 2-3: Hometown Holiday
December 17: Farmers Market Holiday Mart
Pictures with Santa:
November 26th: Lee’s Summit History Museum from 2-4pm
December 3rd: Got Art Gallery from 3-5pm
December 10th: Got Art Gallery from 3-5pm
December 17th: Lee’s Summit History Museum from 2-4pm
Downtown Lee’s Summit Main Street will host its annual Haunted & Historic Spaces Tour on Saturday, October 15.
The tour will feature the historic Todd George Home. Todd George was a well-known real estate investor in Lee’s Summit and was elected mayor in 1916. He served six terms over the next 16 years. During his time as mayor, George lead the street and sidewalk paving program in the Downtown business district. The Todd George home was placed on the National Register for Historic Places in 2009. It now houses the offices of the Spilker McKeone and Nelson accounting firm.
Four tour times are available at 6:30 pm, 7:45 pm, 9 pm, and 10:15 pm. A wine reception at the historic Todd George Home precedes each tour. Tickets will be $20 each and space is limited. Tickets are available for purchase on Downtown Lee’s Summit Main Street’s website, www.downtownls.org, starting September 1 at 12 pm. Jason Offutt, a paranormal expert and author, will lead each tour.
The Haunted & Historic Spaces Tour is presented by Bank of Lee’s Summit and Downtown Lee’s Summit Main Street’s Economic Enhancement Committee. Additional support is provided by Lee’s Summit History Museum, Hampton Inn Lee’s Summit, John Knox Pavilion, and Spilker McKeone and Nelson. Downtown Lee’s Summit Main Street is a 501c3 nonprofit organization dedicated to the revitalization and preservation of historic Downtown Lee’s Summit.
For more information about this event or other upcoming Downtown Lee’s Summit events, visit www.downtownls.org.
Downtown Lee’s Summit will host its monthly Fourth Fridays Art Walk on Friday, August 26, 2016 from 5-8pm. This month’s theme is “Art in the Alleys” and will feature outdoor activities and art exhibits for all ages.
Interactive Art Classes & Workshops:
Friday, August 26 from 5-7pm
Interactive art classes and workshops will be available for all ages throughout the night of the event.
Get tips from professional artist, Ivey Schleisman, about drawing buildings and using perspective in your sketches. The Downtown Lee’s Summit skyline and historic buildings will make a great backdrop for this interactive class. The first 50 attendees to check-in to the Guided Building Sketch class at the Downtown Lee’s Summit Main Street Office (13 SE Third St.) will receive a free sketchbook, drawing pencils, and kneaded eraser.
Head to the alley behind Blue Heron Design to participate in the Painting with Light workshop. Participants will be given magnetic LED lights to toss at metal sheets, which will act as the canvas in this art class. See how each person contributes to the ‘painting’ and watch how it transforms over the course of the night.
Got Art Gallery will host a community painting project in the alley just East of their location on Third Street. An image of the well-known Hartley Heart will get a pop art makeover and you can help paint it! This paint-by-numbers workshop will allow community members to join together in making a unique piece of artwork.
Friday, August 26 from 5-8pm
Art Affects, LLC (305 SW Market St. #2)
Nicole Book, art therapist
Blue Heron Design (11 SE 3rd St.)
Deb Pellicano of The Screaming Elf, fantasy art & Emily Brock of Burned Beauts, wood burned goods
Freeland Photography (320 SE Douglas St.)
Scott Beck, photography
Fossil Forge (317 SE Main St.)
Jay Helland, furniture and woodworking
GOT Art Gallery (18 SW 3rd St.)
Joan Gloor, Carole Gray & Joyce Robinson, group show: Now & Then
Konrad’s Kitchen & Tap House (302 SW Main St.)
Adam Lock, hand drawings
The Space at The Noticed Network (14 ½ SW 3rd St.)
The Step Forward Program, Rainworks rain art
The Peanut (219 SE Main St.)
Kristy August, painting
Red Door Wine Store (229 SE Main St.)
Paula Loe of La Te Da Beads, jewelry artist
Stuey McBrew’s (321 SE Main St.)
Stephanie Pross, watercolor and ink paintings
Alley Artist (between 10 and 12 SW 3rd St.)
Thomasine Weber, photography on metallic paper
More information on can be found on the Fourth Fridays Facebook page at http://www.facebook.com/fourthfridaysLS.
Fourth Fridays Art Walk is sponsored by the Lee’s Summit Arts Council and Truman Heartland Community Foundation.
Other special events happening in Downtown Lee’s Summit the weekend of Friday, August 26:
Fall Open House
Friday & Saturday, August 26-27
Come Downtown and see all of the new fall merchandise our stores are offering! Stock up on the latest trends in clothing, home décor, jewelry, and much more. Shoppers can also enter to win a Downtown Lee’s Summit shopping spree.
Plein Air Paint Out
Friday, August 26 | 5pm-8pm
Painters will take the streets to paint everyday scenes of historic Downtown Lee’s Summit. A panel of judges will pick the winner shortly after 8pm and the public is welcome to attend the judging at Got Art Gallery. The winner’s piece will be featured in the Fall Invitational Exhibit at Got Art Gallery and two $50 cash prizes will be awarded. Pre-registration is required for participants and can be done by contacting Darla Zook at firstname.lastname@example.org. This event is sponsored by Got Art Gallery, Missouri Valley Imptressionist Society, and Downtown Lee’s Summit Main Street.
Big Alley Pop-Up Event
Friday, August 26 | 5pm-6:30pm
Cameron’s Home Furnishings is hosting an alley pop-up shop directly behind their store. Vendors include Swagger KC, Lu La Roe, and more.
Music in the Park
Friday, August 26 | 6:30pm-10pm
Enjoy a free Friday night concert featuring Lithium Lightz at Howard Station Park. Guests are encouraged to bring lawn chairs and/or blankets for seating. Music in the Park is sponsored by The Lee’s Summit Journal, Bank of Lee’s Summit, University of Central Missouri – Lee’s Summit, and Amtrak Missouri RiverRunner.
GLOW Yoga in the Streets
Friday, August 26 | 9pm-10pm
Yoga in the Streets takes place at City Hall Plaza in Downtown Lee’s Summit. Yoga instructors from downtown yoga studio, Good Life Yoga and Tea, will guide the yoga practice, which is for all ages and all ability levels. Bring your own yoga mat and glow jewelry will be provided.
Tickets are now on sale for the Piccadilly Gala, the popular ladies’ night out and auction benefit for Downtown Lee’s Summit Main Street. The mission of Downtown Lee’s Summit Main Street is to promote, enhance, and preserve the heart of our city by cultivating a diverse mix of businesses, cultural and family-friendly events, unique housing options, and inclusive public spaces. DLSMS also plans over 100 days of events in Downtown Lee’s Summit in addition to focusing on historic preservation, business retention and recruitment, and running the Downtown Lee’s Summit Farmers Market.
The 14th Annual Piccadilly Gala will take place Thursday, Sept. 15th at The Pavilion at John Knox Village in Lee’s Summit. Doors open at 6 p.m. Tickets are $60 each and $480 for a table of eight. Guests may purchase tickets by calling the DLSMS Office at 816-246-6598, or in person at 13 SE 3rd Street. Ticket sales are limited to the first 500 women. The event features an upscale catered dinner, silent auction, contests, a cash bar, and the one-of-a-kind Piccadilly auction.
The theme for this year’s Piccadilly Gala is “Jockeys & Juleps,” and suggested attire is semi-formal. For the perfect Derby inspired look, guests can shop big hats, floral prints, and accessories at a number of locally-owned shops in Downtown Lee’s Summit. Visit downtownls.org for a full list of retail shopping locations.
One of the highlights of this signature event is the Piccadilly auction, led by emcee Mark Alford, news anchor with FOX 4. Guests can purchase an “All-In” paddle to increase their chances of winning one of over 50 prize packages, which include excursions, hotel stays, and more. Follow Downtown Lee’s Summit on Facebook to find out the ultimate Grand Prize for the Piccadilly auction, which will be announced soon.
The Piccadilly Gala is presented by Saint Luke’s East Hospital and hosted by Downtown Lee’s Summit Main Street. Sponsors for the event are Bank of Lee’s Summit, Sky Zone, Summit Bank of Kansas City, John Knox Village, Tip Top Tux, and Dynamic Displays.
The annual Fall Open House will be held in Downtown Lee’s Summit on Friday-Saturday, August 26-27, 2016. Visit over a dozen retail stores to find new seasonal merchandise and stock up on the latest trends in clothing, home décor, jewelry, and much more.
Shoppers can enter to win a Downtown Lee’s Summit prize package through our new text-to-win program. Pick up an event map while shopping in any participating store and find out the texting keyword to enter the contest. One lucky winner will receive merchandise and gift cards to enjoy a shopping spree in downtown. Follow Downtown Lee’s Summit Main Street on social media, or visit downtownls.org for more information on places to shop, dine, and explore in downtown.
Free parking for all events is available at the City Hall Parking Garage located at 2nd and Green streets.
The Missouri Main Street Connection hosted the annual Evening of Excellence Awards Thursday, July 28 to honor communities, individuals, businesses and civic organizations that have completed exemplary work in downtown revitalization in Missouri. The event was held at the St. Francis Borgia Parish Jesuit Hall in downtown Washington, Missouri as part of the “Get Plugged in Downtown” state conference. Awards were presented in 16 categories.
Missouri Main Street Connection recognized Donna Furr as the Volunteer of the Year, an award given to only one individual in the state of Missouri each year. Donna was nominated by Downtown Lee’s Summit Main Street (DLSMS) to honor her many contributions to downtown.
“From her very first meeting, Donna made an immediate impact,” said DLSMS executive director, Donnie Rodgers. “Donna never volunteers for the easy jobs and she is happiest working behind the scenes, which makes this award that much more special. We wanted to call attention to her steadfast service to our community.”
Furr is the incoming Chair for the Downtown Days Committee, by far the largest event that DLSMS plans every year. Not only is she instrumental in the success of the Downtown Days Festival, but she also volunteers on a number of other committees including the Emerald Isle Parade.
Furr is a long-time resident of Downtown Lee’s Summit. Her friendly face is frequently seen in its businesses and throughout the district as she takes her dogs on their daily walk.
If you own a business or property downtown, the recent trend in young crowds invading spaces, otherwise empty, could be alarming. But we are here to tell you that not only do these groups and individuals have the potential to be good for business, but they could be great for business!
For those of you unfamiliar with the trend, a new game was released to the Android and IOS platforms that encourages users to search for Pokemon in their area. App users congregate at historic landmarks, points of interest, and what the game calls Pokemon Gyms. The game took steam and people have been flooding the streets, including those in Downtown Lee’s Summit.
We saw businesses reacting two very different ways to the trend earlier in the week: “Get off my lawn” and “Come on in.”
The “get off my lawn” mentality is certainly an understandable reaction, but look twice at those people walking around outside your door. Those are potential customers, and the way you approach and treat them may have a huge impact on the public’s perception of you and your business. We all know that teenagers and 20-somethings are not known for their deep pockets full of disposable income, but think of all the people they know. These individuals are going to spread the word about your business via word of mouth and social media, whether it be positive or negative.
The other approach, which we recommend, is embracing the trend. Find a way to uniquely incorporate it and welcome users of the game into your business. Own a restaurant? Make a Pokemon special. It could be something already on your menu - just rename it accordingly for a week and see how patrons respond. Own a retail store? Take a photo of a rare Pokemon inside your store, post it on social media, and let app users know you are Pokemon-friendly.
No matter which stance you choose, remember that every person is a potential customer or knows
someone who could be. Your time and energy are much better spent explaining what you are all about to new people who walk in your door than wasted chasing away Pickachu seekers. Have fun and be a little spontaneous! You never know what new revenue sources or streams these younger customers could unveil to you.
Volunteers, community members and local business owners were honored during the Downtown Lee’s Summit Main Street Annual Meeting and Awards Dinner, June 28 at The Gamber Center in Lee’s Summit, Mo.
The following individuals and businesses were recognized for their commitment to the revitalization and preservation of Downtown Lee’s Summit.
- The Living Stone, Best Display Window
- @Jolly’s, Business of the Year
- Dave Eames, Dale Hartley Service Award
- Don Ploeger, Downtown Champion
- Abundant Life Baptist Church, Golden Broom Award
- Nancy Bruns, Mary Stacy Ambassador of the Year
- Melissa Beall, New Downtown Dynamo
- Mayor Pro Tempore Rob Binney, Outstanding Public Official
- Downtown Lee’s Summit Main Street Office, Outstanding Special Project
- Jillian Steller, Rookie of the Year
- The Blarney Brew Off, Top Special Event
- Donna Furr, Volunteer of the Year
- Downtown Community Improvement District Board, President’s Award
- Community Branding Initiative, Premier Partner Award
Three seats on the Downtown Lee’s Summit Main Street Board of Directors were up for election at the annual meeting. Current investors of the organization voted on a slate of candidates put forward by the organization’s nominating committee. The newly elected board members, to serve a three-year term, include:
- Lynn Hinkle, regional bank manager with Great Southern Bank
- Tony Olson, owner of Snax Management/Neighborhood Café
- Nick Swearngin, owner of John’s Barber Shop
The event’s theme was “At the Heart of it All” and Downtown Lee’s Summit Main Street unveiled its new mission and vision:
The mission of Downtown Lee’s Summit Main Street is to promote, enhance, and preserve the heart of our city by cultivating a diverse mix of businesses, cultural and family-friendly events, unique housing options, and inclusive public spaces.
Downtown Lee’s Summit is the past, present, and future heart of our community.
Downtown Lee’s Summit Main Street is a 501c3 nonprofit organization dedicated to the revitalization and preservation of Downtown Lee’s Summit. For more information, visit www.downtownls.org.
The National Main Street Center and Missouri Main Street Connection reaffirmed Downtown Lee’s Summit Main Street as a nationally and state accredited Main Street community. This is the highest level a downtown revitalization program can receive. Lee’s Summit is one of six Missouri communities to achieve this honor.
The Downtown Lee’s Summit Main Street organization is evaluated annually by Missouri Main Street Connection, which works in partnership with the National Main Street Center to identify the local programs that meet ten performance standards. These standards set the benchmarks for measuring an individual Main Street program’s application of the Main Street Four-Point Approach® to commercial district revitalization. Evaluation criteria determines the communities that are building comprehensive and sustainable revitalization efforts and include standards such as fostering strong public-private partnerships, tracking economic progress, preserving historic buildings and more.
Both Norma Ramirez de Miess, Senior Program Officer at the National Main Street Center, and Gayla Roten, State Director for Missouri Main Street Connection, congratulate Downtown Lee’s Summit on their achievement.
Ms. Miess noted that “Downtown Lee’s Summit continually builds the program through partnerships, planning, programming and outreach at a very high level. The leadership within the organization has built upon the partnership with the city and other groups to promote Downtown Lee’s Summit as an economically viable destination to live, work, shop, eat and have fun.”
The Missouri Main Street Program’s purpose is to create vibrant communities across the State. This effort is based on numerous recent studies showing that empowering individuals to develop their downtown motivates high achievement, making our state economically stronger. The goal of the Main Street Center and Missouri Main Street program is to encourage preservation-based economic development through the Main Street Four-Point Approach®.
Missouri Main Street Connection provides communities with the tools needed to develop into thriving downtowns. “These tools can be used to create jobs and build a sense of place that not only provides for current Missouri residents, but makes our communities more attractive to new residents and generations to come,” said Ms. Roten.
“This recognition truly belongs to our volunteers,” said Lynn Hinkle, Board President of DLSMS. “Without their tireless hours, dedication and hard work, the success we’ve experienced here in Lee’s Summit would not be possible.”
Communities selected for the accreditation review are evaluated using the annual evaluation process and accreditation criteria intended to assist each community in performing up to national accreditation standards, as prescribed by the National Main Street Center. Though it is a critical moment for a Missouri Main Street community to become accredited, it is equally important for the community to maintain the accreditation status once it has been earned.
Let’s be honest. We all love a good funnel cake now and then. Our staff has been gearing up for Downtown Days for months and we are very excited to get to try some of the great food we’ve been reading about on all those vendor applications. Staff comments:
Julie: Gyros. But my last name is Cook, so I have to live up to that and try everything.
Donnie: Basket ‘o Fries. It’s like an entire meal, but covered in ketchup.
Ashley: Funnel cakes. There’s nothing like a plate of fresh funnel cake.
Jen: Pulled Pork Nachos. I haven’t stopped thinking about them since last year.
(Disclaimer: I totally made up those quotes, but those really are the foods that we are super excited about trying.)
If festival food isn’t your thing, we also have lots of established restaurants and bars in Downtown Lee’s Summit that can cater to your desires. Here’s a handy map of all the places you can get food this weekend: