Downtown Ambassadors have been added to the list of services provided by the Downtown Bend Business Association (DBBA).
The Downtown Ambassadors are a dedicated team of dynamic and responsive volunteers that keep Downtown friendly.
The Ambassador team is comprised of local citizens who share a common affinity for Downtown and an intimate understanding of what's happening around the neighborhood.
Please note: Across the nation, Downtown Ambassadors are changing the definition of hospitality.
These photos (below) are not our Bend Ambassador team, they are from a Downtown that has modeled this program for us to follow.
The Downtown Bend Ambassador Program will pilot the Summer of 2019. Volunteers will be stationed Fridays thru Sundays, 12:00 pm – 6:00 pm offering downtown patrons a positive, interactive, visitor-friendly experience.
Each volunteer would be scheduled for one, three-hour shift from 12:00-3:00 pm or 3:00- 6:00 pm. The program will run Friday, July 5 thru Sunday, Sept. 1, for a total of nine weekends.
Volunteers will be set up in a booth/tent where visitors can come by for materials and information.
Volunteers will engage Bend residents and visitors to downtown with information and suggestions on eating establishments, public restrooms, lodging, parking, entertainment, etc.
Downtown Ambassador duties include but are not limited to:
The Downtown Bend Ambassador program has been a vision of the DBBA's Executive Director, Mindy Aisling, since she began working in Downtown 4 years ago.
"In a world where people are becoming more and more disconnected, Downtown's across the nation represent community hubs where connection flourishes. My vision is for our Ambassador program to provide a level of hospitality and kindness that models to our community the welcoming and inclusive characteristics that Bend stands for."
After many discussions and brainstorming sessions, the Downtown Bend Business Association discovered key partners that could help bring the program's vision into fruition.
The Tower Theatre Foundation, the long-standing nonprofit that owns and operates the historic performing arts venue in the center of downtown Bend, proposed a partnership where the DBBA could test an Ambassador program this summer, harnessing the power of the theatre’s already established and thriving volunteer corps.
Joan Gallinger, the Tower’s volunteer coordinator, said: “The summer is a great time for several of our volunteers to help launch this much-needed effort downtown. Our ushers already answer lots of questions from patrons about places to go, see, park and eat downtown. Plus, they’re trained for emergencies and on giving top customer service. Putting those skills to work on behalf of the city we all love seemed like a very logical, and effective, solution.”
Starbucks in Downtown on Wall Street, who is deeply rooted and involved in the Downtown community, partnered with the program by providing the space for the information booth, and (of course) water for all our favorite dogs in Downtown Bend!
You will be able to find the Downtown Ambassador booth at the Courtyard between North Soles and Starbucks at 812 NW Wall Street. Make sure to save the date for our Ambassador Launch Party on July 5th from noon to 1pm.