By Jim Miller
Director, Historic Valley Junction Foundation
For the Historic Valley Junction Foundation and the city of West Des Moines, receiving the 2012 Great American Main Street Award (GAMSA) this week in Baltimore, represents national recognition as our organization marks 25 years and as a leading Main Street Iowa community.
We work crazy long hours, produce some pretty exceptional events, and do all we can to keep this district well above surviving, but rather thriving and remaining a top destination in the entire region.
What's your favorite Valley Junction event? Tell us in comments.
Being recognized with the highest award that our industry awards is certainly appreciated, and might I say it, I think well-deserved. This award is for – and because of – the entire community and their support, dedication and love for this district. Residents, volunteers, merchants, property owners, and friends all play a part in our success – thank you.
Without a doubt, our biggest supporter and matriarch of this district is, indeed, Betty Hill-Swander. There aren’t too many people in the entire area that don’t know Betty or haven’t visited the landmark Theatrical Shop, calling Historic Valley Junction home since 1970.
From dance shoes to Dracula teeth, from theatrical makeup to movie character masks, from Santa Suits to fishnet tights, it’s all here (and shipped all over the world for that matter). She is one of a kind and deserves great credit for our place as a top retail specialty district. She believes in independent businesses and believes in this district. And she works more than most, 40 plus years after beginning the Theatrical Shop.
This is opening week for baseball, and we’re just about on the same schedule. Gallery Night, 25th Anniversary Prom, Earth Day, Cinco de Mayo, Farmers Market, Music in the Junction – the list goes on and on. Each and every event we produce is free to attend, and we invite you to join us for one of our many fun, family-friendly events.
Our volunteers, merchants and performers are ready to see you – visit us soon. This GAMSA community is ready for you.
For a full calendar of events, please visit www.valleyjunction.com