JACKSON, Miss. (June 17, 2021) – The Mississippi Main Street Association (MMSA) celebrated achievements of Mississippi Main Street Communities at the Annual Awards Luncheon in downtown Jackson.
The annual awards luncheon honors Main Street directors, board members and volunteers and recognizes the most outstanding downtown development projects and events from Main Street communities in Mississippi.
“After a year without face-to-face meetings, we are excited to celebrate the achievements of our Main Street communities again in person,” said Thomas Gregory, MMSA State Coordinator. “As difficult as 2020 was for our communities, we still saw economic growth in our downtowns and resiliency from the small businesses in our downtown districts.”
“Our local Main Street directors have worked tirelessly to provide services to small businesses and create innovative ways to connect people together during the pandemic, and we are proud to celebrate their successes at our annual awards,” Gregory added.
MMSA staff presented the 2021 awards to recipients from Designated Main Street programs throughout the state.
This year's award recipients are:
· Aberdeen Main Street
· Batesville Main Street
· Biloxi Main Street
· Team Cleveland Main Street
· Main Street Clinton
· Main Street Columbus
· Main Street Corinth
· Main Street Greenville
· Main Street Greenwood, Inc.
· Downtown Hattiesburg Association
· Hernando Main Street Chamber
· Kosciusko Main Street
· Louisville/Noxapater Main Street
· New Albany Main Street
· Ocean Springs Main Street
· Main Street Pascagoula
· Picayune Main Street, Inc.
· Senatobia Main Street
· Starkville Main Street Association
· Tunica Main Street
· Downtown Tupelo Main Street Association
· Vicksburg Main Street Program
· Water Valley Main Street Association
· West Point Main Street
2020-2021 MMSA Board President Steven Dick of Mississippi Power passed the gavel to 2021-2022 MMSA Board President Chris Chain of Renovations of Mississippi during the general business meeting.
In addition, the 2021 nationally accredited programs were recognized, as well as new MMSA communities, Pearl and Itawamba County, several new associate members, and Main Street directors who have served for 10 years or longer in their communities.
The Downtown Tupelo Main Street Association was also recognized for winning the Great American Main Street Award in 2020, the most prestigious award given by Main Street America.
The Mississippi Development Authority, Entergy Mississippi, and Mississippi Power were recognized as corporate sponsors of the annual awards, and the Mississippi Department of Archives and History, Belinda Stewart Architects, and the Mississippi Urban Forestry Commission were recognized as event sponsors of this year’s awards program.
In 2020, Mississippi Main Street's Designated Communities generated 191 net new businesses, 52 business expansions to existing businesses, 584 net new jobs, 74 building rehabilitations and 746 downtown residential units. In addition, 75 public improvement projects were completed as well as 26 new construction projects in downtown business districts. More than $227 million was invested by the public and private sectors in 2020, and more than 22,185 volunteer hours were recorded.
Every dollar spent in this organization results in $80 of private investment, the highest return on investment of any economic activity in the state.
Since 1993, MMSA has generated more than $5.8 billion in private and public investment (including more than $1.5 billion in public investment).
MMSA currently has 47 Designated Main Street Communities, four Network members, and 11 Associate members.
2021 Award Winners
Mississippi Main Street Association (MMSA) is a catalyst for the preservation and economic revitalization of Mississippi’s historic downtowns and districts. As a Main Street America™ Coordinating Program, MMSA helps lead a powerful, grassroots network consisting of more than 40 Coordinating Programs and over 1,200 neighborhoods and communities across the country committed to creating high-quality places and to building stronger communities through preservation-based economic development.
For individual project photos and awards narratives, please email firstname.lastname@example.org.
For more information about MMSA, visit www.msmainstreet.com.
With only four months left until the 10th Annual Delta Hot Tamale Festival, Greater Greenville Development Foundation, the parent company of Main Street Greenville and the administrator of the festival, is busy making plans for the October affair. After the cancellation of last year’s festival due to COVID-19, the organization is looking to reemerge in blockbuster fashion. Tuesday afternoon, Greater Greenville Development Foundation announced that Big Head Todd and the Monsters will headline the free Friday night concert in downtown Greenville. “The Friday night concert was one aspect we wanted to bring back to the festival,” said Daniel Boggs, CEO of Greater Greenville Development Foundation. He continued “our entertainment committee worked very hard to find a band that exemplified the theme of the festival, while also attracting a cross-sector audience from within our region.”
Big Head Todd and the Monsters certainly fit that bill. Co-founder Todd Park Mohr describes the band’s latest album, New World Arisin’, as, “straight up rock-pop”, while their previous decade of music includes a side project dubbed Big Head Blues Club, which paid homage to Robert Johnson.
The band’s uncanny ability to stretch their musical talents from mainstream hits like “Bittersweet” and “Broken Hearted Savior” to John Lee Hooker and Jimi Hendrix remakes, “Boom Boom” and “Room Full of Mirrors” makes them the proverbial saltine to the Delta hot tamale. “We couldn’t be more pleased to bring a band of this caliber to the Delta Hot Tamale Festival,” said Boggs of the announcement.
In their 30+ year career, Big Head Todd and the Monsters have sold out the famed Red Rocks Amphitheater 19 times, collaborated with legends B.B. King and John Lee Hooker, and charted 5 times on Billboard’s US Mainstream Rock Chart. They are sure to complement the Delta Hot Tamale Festival’s 3-day line-up of activities, which start with a Welcome Dinner Thursday night and close after a Saturday filled with cook-offs, crafts, kid’s activities, and local music acts.
For future announcements concerning the 10th annual Delta Hot Tamale Festival, organizers suggest following them on Facebook or visiting www.mainstreetgreenville.com. For more information on Big Head Todd and the Monsters, please visit www.bigheadtodd.com.
According to Mississippi Magazine’s 2021 Best of Mississippi Readers’ Poll, the Delta Hot Tamale Festival is the Best Fair or Festival in the state of Mississippi. After being nominated for this award in previous years, 2021 marks the first time the festival has received top honors.
Each spring readers from all over the region participate in Mississippi Magazine’s annual poll. This year’s contest featured several notable fairs and festivals across the state, including the Canton Flea Market, Double Decker Arts Festival in Oxford, Laurel Loblolly Festival, Mississippi Book Festival, Mississippi Comic Con, Mississippi Science Festival, Mississippi State Fair, Neshoba County Fair, and the Peter Anderson Festival in Ocean Springs – with the Delta Hot Tamale Festival emerging as the winner after all ballots were counted. “We are truly honored and humbled by this recognition,” said Daniel Boggs, CEO of Greater Greenville Development Foundation, Inc., “all of the nominees are well accomplished in our state, drawing a significant number of attendees from both inside and outside of Mississippi’s borders. We are proud to be listed among them.”
Held the third weekend in October each year, the Delta Hot Tamale Festival is a 3-day long literary, culinary, and musical celebration that attracts over 28,000 festivalgoers from 17 different states and 3 different countries. As the “Hot Tamale Capital of the World,” Greenville has been honoring its favorite delicacy with a festival since 2012. The tradition has grown to include over 100 craft vendors, 2 days of nonstop music on three separate stages, and some of the most unique hot tamale vendors within the region.
Plans for the 2021 festival are underway, and Main Street Greenville, the administrators of the event, says to expect a few changes. “We strive to make the festival better each year by thoroughly examining every aspect,” says Boggs, “This year is no different. While October’s festival will have many of the familiar events of the past, we are excited about the enhancements to this year’s festival.”
Main Street Member: Taste of New Orleans, LLC.
Your Name and Title: Everett & Kiara Chinn. Owners/ Executive & Sous Chefs
What products or services do you provide? Catering and Private Dining options for small/intimate dinners, dinner parties, birthdays and anniversaries, as well as small weddings.
Who started your business and when? Conversations for Dat Taste of New Orleans was established in 2009 with only a computerized business plan for the restaurant and Bed & Breakfast. We started catering private dinners for couples for several years until we officially named ourselves Dat Taste of New Orleans in 2017. With various methods/ instruction on the proper way to set up our business (through programs through Guaranty Bank, SBA, etc.) our plan for business had became more clear over the last three years and then the official leap (of faith) was taken to get everything started; that came only through much sincere prayer and confirmation that only God could give us.
What is your company’s mission statement, personal life motto, or goal each day? "When taste buds speak, they say Dat Taste!"
Did you have, or do you currently have a mentor? How has that mentor helped you? Our mentor is the most spiritual being there is. It's only by the grace of God that we are able to utilize our gift. This process has not been easy at all. With everything in our business, it always begins with and is centered around God. We are nothing without him. It's never a shift or catering event we start without thanking and praying to God first.
What helps your business thrive? The love and dedication we have to our business as well as the people we are privileged to serve. It's literally like having an awakening everytime someone tries our food and their faces light up because they are so amazed at the flavors we produce with our meals. If love really is considered an ingredient, then it is definitely used in every dish.
What are your or your business’s plans for the future? Although we still desire to remain a unique private dining Café; if we can remain on track we look forward to being able to make the other portion of our facility a small Bed & Breakfast. There are many great hotels around but not Bed & Breakfast options and here in Greenville can be the perfect treat. Along with still being able support and start great initiatives for the residents here in Greenville.
What is the best way for a customer to reach you? Our best contact method is through our email system if it is after hours or simply stopping by the Café to discuss your needs and how we can be of assistance.
Where can companies find you on social media? We are visible on Facebook (@DatTasteNOLA) or Instagram (@thechinns_dattaste).
Main Street Member Spotlight: Washington County Economic Alliance and Washington County Chamber of Commerce
Main Street Member: Washington County Economic Alliance / Washington County Chamber of Commerce
Your Name and Title: Will Coppage, Executive Director
What products or services do you provide? The WCEA/Chamber offers a full range of support services from small business support to industrial recruitment. We support all sectors of business and industry will job training services and pathways. Under the Chamber, our goal is to assist the local economy with business strategies, sales, and networking events. The WCEA serves as the liaison between local municipalities in Washington County and Mississippi Development Authority, which is the Governor’s arm for economic development.
Who started your business and when? Our organization has taken many forms through the years. We now are a public/private partnership with both the economic development organization and the chamber under one roof. In 2019, we added under our umbrella the Washington County Work Ready Association, a 501c3 aimed at creating and strengthening workforce pathways in our community and to assist area employers.
What’s an interesting fact about your business most people don’t know? We really do a little of everything. The Chamber should be your first contact for support on an issue, as well as a promotion. Businesses that take advantage of our free services are highly pleased.
What do you enjoy most about doing business in Greenville? Greenville and Washington County is at a turning point, and there are many, many stakeholders working hard for our community. The community now looks better than it did 10 years ago because of that hard work, and I guarantee you the community in 10 years will look thriving because of consistent hard work and investments, both public and private.
What are your or your business’s plans for the future? It is one thing to help job seekers obtain a job. We want to teach job seekers how to create jobs and be entrepreneurial. Whether it is starting a brick and mortar business downtown or learning how to sell on an online platform, we would like to encourage the spirit of entrepreneurship.
What is the best way for a customer to reach you? With the current situation of covid-19, I find myself working in office and remotely. The best way is to email me at email@example.com. You can also call our office at 662-378-3141. You can find the emails of our team at wceams.com.
Where can companies find you on social media?
Recent grant proceeds from the Weinberg Family Foundation and the Mississippi Main Street Association have helped further Main Street Greenville’s Downtown Beautification Program. Each grant totaled $750, and Main Street Greenville matched the contributions to produce $3,000.00 worth of landscape improvements within the Central Business District.
This phase of the program targeted 11 distinct areas including the intersection of Broadway and Main Street, as well as various other highly visible locations within the area. Local contractor, Lewis Henry of Lewis Henry Landscaping, completed the intersection installation this weekend which included a mix of flowering and evergreen shrubs. Main Street Greenville, along with organizational volunteers, will be responsible for maintaining the areas.
Main Street Greenville has a continuous commitment to improving all aspects of downtown Greenville. Daniel Boggs, CEO of Greater Greenville, says “Multiple studies conclude that a major component of any community’s downtown revitalization strategy includes concentrated efforts in beautification. As such, we are enthusiastic about enhancing the aesthetics of the entire district, including streetscapes”. Over the past 4 years, Main Street Greenville has contributed over $35,000.00 to downtown beautification projects, with the most notable being the expansion of Stein Mart Square in 2016.
For more information about Main Street Greenville’s programs and services, as well as volunteer opportunities, please visit the organization website at www.mainstreetgreenville.org.
Main Street Greenville is excited to announce this year’s Christmas parade will be in REVERSE!
To ensure the safety of participants and spectators and still spread Christmas joy, we are doing things a little differently this year! This year’s parade, themed “Merry and Bright” will feature stationary floats, Christmas decorations, and performers along Washington Avenue allowing spectators to drive through the festivities on Thursday, December 3, 2020, 5:30-7:30 p.m. The parade route will begin at the Broadway Street intersection with traffic flowing only west/northwest, concluding at Walnut Street.
Oakes Auto Group and Family are the parade’s title sponsors again this year. To help make this year’s event a success we can truly celebrate, we encourage every church and organization, including schools, local businesses, civic groups, groups of carolers, choirs, ensembles, drumlines, and dance teams to participate! Main Street Greenville plans to have the traditional float and marching band awards and is adding two new competitive categories for this year’s parade, the Choir/Carolers Award and the Non-Performing Decorating Group Award. If you've never participated in the parade before, this is YOUR year!
The Choir/Carolers Category is open to any church, school, scout group, civic, or school organization, who would like to spread Christmas joy with their voices. Singing groups will be judged in three areas: musical selection, visual communication of the holiday spirit, and conveyance of parade theme. First place will be awarded a cash prize and trophy.
The Non-Performing Decorating Group Category has been created for small businesses, civic groups, student groups, churches, etc. who want to show their Christmas Spirit but who cannot create a float. The possibilities are ENDLESS, but some examples are:
• A church group or church’s youth group doing a live nativity scene
• A civic group dressing in festive costumes with some Merry and Bright blow-up characters
• A small business decorating an antique tractor with Merry and Bright themed decorations
Get together with your friends or your organizations! Use golf carts, 10x10 pop up tents, vehicles, bicycles, tractors, yard decorations, lights, costumes...but most of all your CREATIVITY!!! First, second, and third place prizes will be awarded cash prizes.
To participate in this year’s parade, please visit our website www.MainStreetGreenville.com. We look forward to seeing you there!
Main Street Member: Regions Bank, 540 Main Street
Your Name and Title: Walt Stephens Market Executive/President
Who started Regions Bank and when? Today’s Regions, started as three small community banks in three separate Alabama towns, shortly after the state entered the Union. The First National Bank of Huntsville started in 1835, First National Bank of Montgomery (which would form the core of Regions Bank) started in 1871 shortly after the Civil War, and Exchange Bank in Birmingham opened their doors in 1928.
Locally, Regions began as First National Bank of Greenville in 1887, the first federally chartered bank in Washington County.
What do you credit to Regions’ success? Regions Financial Corporation and its predecessors have played an important role in the economic growth of a large swath of our country for more than 167 years. Regions has provided untold support to many communities, educational institutions, healthcare facilities, and other businesses that has enabled them to thrive. In return, those same entities have continued to support Regions in a true partnership fashion. It’s a remarkable story of a strong culture built over time. More than 100 banks and other financial institutions have come together to form what we know today as Regions Financial. Through those acquisitions and its expansions into new markets, the company has maintained a steadfast focus on doing what is right for its customers, its communities, its shareholders, and its associates.
What is your company’s mission statement, personal life motto, or goal each day? Regions makes life better. Our mission at Regions is to achieve superior economic value for our shareholders over time by making life better for our customers, our associates, and our communities and creating shared value as we help them meet their financial goals and aspirations. Shared value is at the core of our mission and our business strategy. It’s a simple idea: what we do as a business has to benefit our customers, our company and shareholders, and the communities where we operate.
Serving the customer as one team, in an exceptional way, is our business, our only business. We serve our customers by keeping our core values at the center of each interaction and decision we make. Put people first. Do what is right. Focus on your customer. Reach higher. Enjoy life.
What is the best way for a customer to reach you? Either via email firstname.lastname@example.org, text, or phone 662-433-6685…I am always available for my clients
Where can companies find you on social media? We are on Facebook (Regions Bank), Twitter (@regionsbank) and Instagram (Regions Bank)
Main Street Member: Hodding Carter Memorial YMCA
Your Name and Title: Bob Williams, CEO
What products or services do you provide? The Y offers a variety of services and programs to members as well as the whole community. We have structured and unstructured activities that range from health, fitness, sports skills, prevention, living a healthier life, group exercise, aquatics, etc. The list is quite long. The three focus areas are healthy living, youth development, and social responsibility.
What is your company’s mission statement, personal life motto, or goal each day? To put Christian principles into practice through programs that build healthy spirit, mind, and body for all.
What do you enjoy most about doing business in Greenville? Our Y is truly community-based. Our members reflect the community accurately. It is our commitment to “service to all” that is truly a core principle we operate by.
What changes have you made to assist your customers during COVID-19? Enhanced cleaning, abiding by governmental, YUSA, and other recommended safety practices.
What is the best way for a customer to reach you? email@example.com
Where can companies find you on social media? Our website provides links to our Facebook page. The Website address is: www.ymcahcm.org.
Your Name and Title: Parker England – President
How did Planters Bank get its start? Planters Bank began in Ruleville, MS in 1920 by several businessmen in the MS Delta. Planters Bank now has over $1 billion in assets, serving thirteen communities in nineteen locations. We are currently celebrating our 100th anniversary and are looking forward to serving our customers and communities for the next 100 years!
What is your company’s mission statement, personal life motto, or goal each day? Planters Bank is committed to providing quality financial services delivered by friendly and professional staff. As an independent community bank, we dedicate our resources to the betterment of our customers, shareholders, employees, and markets we serve.
What do you enjoy most about doing business in Greenville? The people and community as a whole make Greenville the wonderful place it is. We love seeing and serving our customers, and Planters Bank loves playing our role in the success of Greenville and Washington County.
What changes have you made to assist your customers during COVID-19? Initially, we serviced all of our Customer needs through drive-thru only services. It was a different experience not having customers in our lobbies, but one that was necessary to keep our customers and employees safe during these uncertain times. Over the past several months, we opened our lobbies on a limited basis. To assure everyone’s safety, we are allowing 5 customers in our lobbies at a time. We will continue to monitor our COVID-19 policies as additional guidance comes.
What is the best way for a customer to reach you? Stop by our Washington Avenue branch (424 Washington Avenue) or give me a call at (662) 379-2557