If you’re a Maine-made Merchant interested in expanding your business…the city of Presque Isle WANTS YOU. A new public market is opening in downtown Presque Isle in just two months. It needs more vendors. And like any successful enterprise, the key is LOCATION, LOCATION, LOCATION. Shawn Cunningham reports.
A snow covered Riverside Park isn’t deterring city officials from their efforts of moving forward with their downtown district revitalization coup…the launch of an outdoor public market set to open on May 15th.
Martin Puckett is the PI Deputy City Manager and says “downtown is really the apex of the community, we want to increase pedestrian traffic we want to increase traffic in the downtown you have the bike path, you have the community center that’s coming down there you look at all the merchants there’s a lot happening and we’re trying to grow upon that.”
“The idea is to attach main street to the PI stream and to create that excitement like you do in San Antonio or other communities and I think that’s what we’re trying to do here is to say ok there’s a lot of reasons to come to downtown PI to shop, to eat to attend the market and just create a real exciting atmosphere I think,” adds Ken Arndt, the PI Dir. Of Planning Development.
Puckett says farmers, crafters and artisans of all talents are invited to set up shop in the new market. Arndt says it truly has been a collaborative effort of many city entities including the police, fire, public works departments and sewer and water district. In addition to the market, Puckett says there will also be other pursuits the community can enjoy including a large screen for a community movie night, and the return of music in the park after a year long hiatus. Puckett says the snow hasn’t even melted yet, and he’s already hearing how excited people are for the spring and summer events.
Puckett says “people really like the idea, the businesses that are located in the downtown they’re excited about it whenever we do an event in the downtown the local merchants some of them have told me they see a 20 percent increase in business that day.” Arndt adds “you look at any community one that pops to mind is Fredericton, NB really exciting downtown all because the public market there is just started and then grown and so people get more invested its like their downtown.”
Puckett says vendor applications to have a spot in the market are being accepted through the end of March. For more information you can contact the city of Presque Isle at 764-2727.