It was another wonderful week supporting small businesses in Downtown Bend! Our mission is the increase the vitality of Downtown Bend, and DBBA staff and board once again worked tirelessly at this mission.
We also had a ton of fun putting together the community tree lighting for Bend. This event is always one of the highlights of the year for DBBA staff.
"I can't help it," says Mindy Aisling, DBBA Executive Director, "I tear up at every community tree lighting. There is just something so magical and small-town about Santa counting down to the lighting of the community tree with the citizens our our community."
This year, because of COVID19, the community tree lighting (like everything else) had to be re-imagined. In years past, the community tree lighting has been a big party, where local Bend families come out to visit with Santa, drink local beer, sing songs, and light the community tree together. For 2020, the Community tree lighting is going virtual. DBBA staff worked with Mayor Russell, Bob Shaw and Santa to pre-record the tree lighting and have it played on KTVZ on Friday, 11/27, so that the community could count down to the lighting of the tree from the comfort and safety of their homes. For more information, click here.
This week we also continued to work on the Shop Small Passport Event to drive traffic to local businesses. This year we are once again registered as a Neighborhood Champion with American Express, which allows us to receive free swag that we can give out to participants. We worked to get all these goodies out, we continued to promote on our social media, and we made sure that our stores at the supplies they needed.
As we mentioned in a previous weekly update, we are passing on savings so that businesses can market themselves at a discounted rate in the Downtown Bend Holiday Guide that will publish in The Source on 12/10. We are also creating a full centerpiece spread with photos of our local merchants and families and the messaging will say "Shopping local supports local Bend families" - or something similar. We are working hard to spread the message that shopping local matters!
Meeting with the wonderful women who are running the new North West Crossing (NWX) Business Association was a delight. We discussed a plethora of ways to collaborate for the good of our community. With a powerful belief that collaboration works better than competition we set forward on a path to include not only our two districts, but other shopping districts, such as The Box Factory and Old Mill to unite for a common good. By working together, we can make sure that planned events don't overlap, that promotions and event compliment each other, and that we are able to offer each other wisdom, experience and support.
This week was also the DBBA Board of Directors meeting. The DBBA Board of Directors meets every month on the 3rd Wednesday of the month, and is open to the public. To follow along with our agenda and minutes, click here. If you'd like to attend the next board meeting, click here to be added to the calendar invite. This month we had a guest speaker from Yiftee, a digital gift card program, and the board and staff decided to move forward to test the public and business participation of an online option for our currently paper-only Downtown Dollar program. We are excited to roll this out, and (if all goes as planned) we'll have some exciting updates for you in regards to this program and future sponsorship!
Oregon Mainstreet is a organization that we are grateful to be a part of every single day. Collaborating with other downtown districts, and sharing mutual benefits is a powerful component to increasing the vitality of our downtown district. This week, Oregon Mainstreet offer a series of webinars on funding. This kind of valuable education is just one of the benefits we receive from Oregon Mainstreet. The DBBA board and staff are taking a long, deep look at funding for the organization in preparation for the EID renewal in Spring 2021. If you have any questions about DBBA funding, please feel free to reach out to us.
We've been meeting with the newly elected councilors for Bend City Council, and we are looking forward to working with them to build a strong downtown for years to come. This past week we met with Melanie Kebler to talk about funding, beautification, water conservation, parking, open streets, future Holiday programs to increase tourism, & more.
In 2018, the DBBA Executive Director met with all of the business and building owners who were willing to sit down and talk about what they wanted for Downtown Bend and how they felt that the DBBA could support that vision. One thing that we heard was that our stakeholders wanted more advocacy and resources. We have worked diligently at supplying these things both pre and post COVID19. This week we once again communicated with our stakeholders on how to participate in advocacy for their industry and how to receive support for themselves and their staff.
Last but not least, we continued to decorate Downtown Bend for the holidays. As mentioned in a previous post, this year we upgraded all of our wreaths to include solar-paneled warm white twinkle lights, and we're loving the way they look!
The Downtown Bend Business Association (DBBA) is a small nonprofit
dedicated to increasing the vitality of Downtown Bend.
Coal Headwear is crafted for adventure seekers. Since 2002, Coal has produced high quality beanies, hats, and technical accessories for the outdoors. Shop for this item, and lots of other great things at Revolvr online: www.revolvrmens.com
As temperatures began to dip (and we even saw a bit of snow!), the DBBA continued to work hard to keep downtown running ship-shape! This week we'd like to talk a little bit about our daily work, that often doesn't get noticed. We like to feature special projects that we are working on in these updates, but much of the work that we do is done daily.
For example, we provide excellent everyday customer service - this means that we answer questions and provide guidance - responding to phone calls, emails, website forms and (in non-COVID times) office drop-by's to help drive traffic into Downtown Bend. This includes answering questions about directions, parking, specific businesses, products, restaurants, and all sorts of other things. In some ways, we operate as Downtown's visitor's center.
We also provide marketing for Downtown Bend every single day. This means posts on our social media, engagement and comment management on social media & content creation for all of our platforms. We also do 100% of our website management in-house, and we are working every day to improve our website and better reflect our businesses and downtown community.
On-the-street cleaning, litter-removal, sidewalk sweeping, graffiti and sticker removal, and business safety checks are all services that we perform every single day, 365 days per year.
And that's not all - we also run the Downtown Dollars program every day - issuing, mailing and delivering Downtown Dollar gift certificates to keep money flowing into our Downtown.
With a staff of only 2.5 people, we accomplish a tremendous amount of work. All of these daily services are provided plus special projects, events, decorations, advocacy and more! The Downtown Bend Business Association is committed to increasing the vitality of Downtown Bend!
Much of our time and energy this week was spent launching our Small Business Passport Event and collecting and creating prize baskets for the winners. This event takes an abundance of labor to put together and make possible, but we are happy to report that it has officially been launched and we are excited to see people in downtown getting their passports stamped.
We can't wait to raffle off our six prize baskets with amazing products and gift cards from our local merchants. The raffle will take place on Small Business Saturday, November 28th, 2020.
We would like to thank all of our participating merchants who made this event possible.
Unfortunately we had to cancel our Wreath Spruce-up Ball due to the increasing numbers of COVID19. This event would have allowed a group of volunteers to come together and beautify the wreaths that hang in Downtown Bend.
As many of us have had to do in a multititle of ways since COVID19, this was a quick plot shift and the DBBA had to shift gears quickly to find a way to get a plethora of wreaths cleaned, fluffed, and redecorated so that they could be installed in Downtown Bend.
DBBA Staff and Board rallied together to make this happen. This included board and staff taking wreaths home to complete the job. We'd like to give a big shout-out to aos Skincare and Spa and The Wine Shoppe in Downtown Bend - two businesses and board members who really came to the rescue - taking wreaths home to decorate and then bringing them back to be installed in Downtown Bend. Thank you!
This week, we were also happy to provide all of our merchants the opportunity to advertise at a discounted rate in the The Downtown Bend Holiday Gift Guide in The Source. Every year we provide this service, and it always creates a great booklet that features the best of Downtown Bend.
Working with local advertisers to get great rates for our businesses is one of the services we love to offer. DBBA staff also often puts on their 'sales' hats to sell advertising (whether it's in a publication, on a kiosk, for an event, or for our banner program). We are committed to not only finding & providing the best rates to promote our Downtown businesses, but also in increasing DBBA streams of revenue to supplement our EID funding.
We also prepared for winter snow removal in Downtown Bend by getting our snow blowers into the shop to have their regular maintenance completed, making sure that all of our snow shovels, & supplies were ready to go and stocking up on necessities like ice melt!
In the photo on the left you can see DBBA staff removing snow by the fountain on the corner of Lava and Minnesota in Downtown Bend. The DBBA has two snow blowers, and ATV with a snow plow and a plethora of snow shovels to make sure that downtown sidewalks stay clear no matter how much snow falls.
The DBBA's mission is to increase the vitality of Downtown Bend!
In July of 2013, Jon & Christine Davis opened up the doors for the "Soft Opening" of Revolvr Menswear in Bozeman, Montana. It was a concept they weren't sure would work; they had heard over and over from friends that a men's-only clothing store wouldn't succeed. Well, it was a huge hit that night, and the next morning they were on the phone ordering more inventory to fill the store.
Word spread and sales continued to climb, and by March of 2015 they opened the second location in Bend, Oregon. It was another void that needed to be filled in the town and the store was an instant hit. Visit Revolvr Menswear, try some local beer, relax, and prepare to look damn good.
This year you can SHOP SMALL and be entered to WIN BIG for three entire weeks!
Between Saturday 11/7 and Saturday 11/28:
Angelina Organic Skincare (aos for short), your modern-day skincare apothecary and wellness community.
Since 1998, they've blended traditional herbal wisdom with proven plant-based science to reveal your skin’s natural radiance and vitality. By supporting small, organic farms and Fair Trade cooperatives and working towards zero-waste production, they create beauty from the ground up. Every ingredient in their luxuriously effective, small-batch formulations is sustainably grown and harvested to support their “full-circle beauty” philosophy.
They are happy to offer facial and massage services in our brand new Wellness Spa, located upstairs from our retail store. They blend ancient wisdom with modern technology to bring your skin into its most radiant, glowing state.
This year you can SHOP SMALL and be entered to WIN BIG for three entire weeks!
Between Saturday 11/7 and Saturday 11/28:
Here is how it works: