Stillwater Non-Profit Uses Unique Idea For Vacant Downtown Spaces

Wednesday, September 18th 2019, 6:58 pm
By: Clayton Cummins

A Stillwater non-profit is working to get more businesses to move to its vacant downtown spaces. 

The Downtown Stillwater Association asked its residents to write ideas for vacant storefronts on large sticky notes to be posted.

The idea came from another city during a conference and was initiated during a weekend music festival.

“It is a real problem, we don't want vacant buildings and empty storefronts here,” said Kristen Hadley, treasurer of the Downtown Stillwater Association. “We'd rather see people here and have more reasons to come downtown and support the heart of our community.”

Local business owner Leora Barrows is a big fan. She feels the more, the merrier.

“The more economic people that I can bring into Stillwater, the better it is for me,” said Barrows. “I want to see the competition; I want to see the people coming back into town.”

Organizers have gotten quite the responses from citizens ranging anywhere from a hotel, to an electronics store.

“We have a shoe store, a pie shop, some kids even wrote some really fun things like an indoor skatepark or a zoo even,” said Hadley.

Whatever the idea, the project is already considered a success.

“We want everyone to start talking about and thinking of ideas, you never know where that will lead,” said Hadley. “Even if one business decides to move downtown because of this project, it'll be worth the cost of the sticky notes.”

The large sticky notes will be left up for some time. If you would like to get involved in the action, sticky notes can be picked up from the WorkIT Coworking Center located at 901 S. Main Street in Stillwater.