Originally Published by The Claremore Daily Progress - Feb 5, 2017 - Mary Pryor
Executive Director of Claremore Main Street Jessica Jackson and two downtown business owners spoke about their vision for the future of the historic district at the Claremore Collective meeting on Thursday.
Haberdashery owner Justin Michael and Cranberry Merchant owner Chelsea Mize each told their stories of how they grew up in Claremore and came to be downtown building and business owners. They then shared their ideas of how they would like to envision their businesses in the future.
Michael spoke about his purchase of the Twin Oaks Hotel building and how his plans would ultimately be to open a boutique-style hotel in the upper floors. He and his wife would also like to open a farm to table style restaurant on the bottom floor with a rooftop bar to overlook the city.
Chelsea Mize spoke about the space on the upper floors of her building above the Cranberry Merchant.
Mize said that she envisions the space as more as an artist's loft where photographers or artists could create or even offer yoga classes. She also expressed interest in turning the rooftop of her building into an outdoor garden space.
Main Street Executive Director Jessica Jackson discussed what duties the various committees of the organization work on including promotion, design and façade.
Jackson also mentioned an unveiling about downtown parking, which will be presented at the Feb. 20 city council meeting.
Jackson also stated that the group is looking into outdoor speakers to play music as people enjoy strolling down Will Rogers Boulevard to shop and dine.
Claremore Collective Executive Director Meggie Froman-Knight explained that downtown development is one of the initiatives that the young professionals group hopes to help by setting goals and connecting possibilities.
Froman-Knight also said that a group of Claremore representatives took a trip in November to Bentonville, Arkansas to listen to a panel speak about how their downtown area.
She stated downtown Claremore is similar to Bentonville, which has seen a growth in gross income rise from $400,000 to $10.4 million.