Make the McKenzie Connection!

Another look at Main Street

Third session set for May 30th

LEABURG: The McKenzie River Discovery Center at Leaburg Lake hosted the second “Listening Session” on May 10th for a proposal to see if the McKenzie area could benefit from a “Main Street” approach. It’s an idea that has helped communities around the state either boost or stabilize their economies, according to the National Main Street Center and Oregon Parks and Recreation.

In April, the McKenzie River Chamber of Commerce co-sponsored a meeting with RAIN and Rural Development Initiatives at the Vida McKenzie Community Center focused on small businesses.

Last Friday’s session involved exercises to help define areas where local arts and culture could help revitalize the area’s regional economy. Some of the things people say the McKenzie River has going for it (besides the river itself) include a population of local artists, its historical significance, and scenery.

On the negative side of the scale, some felt, was that while the area’s natural attractions were a draw, there weren’t many places where people could shop - whether for works of art or consumer goods. Mentioned as well were vacant commercial spaces in both Leaburg and Vida that were well-located and available.

Another session - this time focused on recreation - will be held on Thursday, May 30th, at McKenzie Schools. The public is invited to attend that meeting, scheduled for 3 to 4:30 p.m.


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