Downtown Network Heber Springs recently awarded the first Building Improvement Grant of the season for merchants in the downtown historic commercial district, giving the grant to Styles Retail Therapy located at 201 W. Main Street. The competitive grant application process was available to downtown merchants for signage, awnings, or storefront improvements.  Store owner Lindsey Payton applied for the grant money to assist in the repainting of the woodwork around the store’s entrance, and to assist with the purchase and installation of a new, brightly colored valance on the store’s metal awning. The work was completed on March 30. She said, “We are so grateful for the Downtown Network’s help to freshen up the store front. Not only does it improve our building, but these types of improvements help brighten up the whole downtown area, and that benefits everyone.”

Downtown Network Executive Director Kathy Phillips said, “These grants are made possible through funds received from our parent organization, Main Street Arkansas, which is a program of the Arkansas Historic Preservation Program. Their focus is on not only promoting our downtown areas, but also preserving the character of our historic buildings. We are proud to be able to help in the beautification and preservation of our downtown, and to help our small business owners in the process.”

The Downtown Network Heber Springs is a downtown revitalization program which aims to achieve its mission of “promoting economic vitality while preserving the charm of Historic Downtown Heber Springs,” by utilizing the Main Street approach to downtown revitalization. This approach has been used successfully in more than 1200 communities across the country, focusing on four areas: organization, promotion, design and economic restructuring. For more information about Downtown Network Heber Springs, contact Kathy Phillips at 501-270-2204.