Plans are moving ahead with the formation of a nonprofit downtown St. Clair organization.
Community business and organization members gathered last month to discuss the possibility of moving forward with organizing a downtown business group. The majority of those who attended decided in favor of forming the group.
The Missourian spoke with Gina Latimer, with GNA Outfitter, and Kerri Ealer, of Blondie’s Bar & Grill, for more information. The name of the organization is St. Clair Downtown District, Inc.
The downtown district includes portions of Springfield Avenue, Main Street and Kitchell Avenue.
“Our goal is to help downtown,” Latimer said. “I don’t feel like the focus has been on our downtown.”
“One of the things that I would like to definitely hit on is we’re all leaning on each other to grow this town. We want others to be able to come here and relax and have a good time.”
The board members are President Kerri Ealer, Vice President Gina Latimer, Secretary Angel Kelley, of The T-Shirt Shack, Treasurer Tiffany Burton, of St. Clair Auto Body, and board member Stacey Price, of Outside the Box.
“Any organizations or persons who want to be involved, we are more than interested in opening up and letting people volunteer and help,” Ealer said.
The organization is waiting for its 501(c)(3) nonprofit status, which will six to eight weeks for approval according to Ealer. In the meantime, downtown businesses can participate in monthly meetings, which are held the first Monday of each month at Blondie’s, starting at 10 a.m.
The yearly membership fee is $75, which includes a welcome pack, according to Ealer. So far, Latimer said they have received support and help from the Chamber and city officials.
They plan to work together with the city, parks department, the St. Clair Area Chamber of Commerce, The Missouri Impact Group and other organizations.
Ealer said they will partner with the parks department for the city’s Christmas event in December, and they plan to work with the Missouri Impact Group for the Share the Harvest event set for Oct. 7.
The Downtown District’s first fundraiser will be a craft show Sunday, Sept. 23, tying in with the Chamber’s car show that same day.
Latimer said a ribbon cutting/introduction of the organization will be at a later date. A Facebook page and a calendar of events are in the works.
To contact the organization, send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org.