September 2022

RDA is a 2023 a Great American Main Street Award Semifinalist

RIVER DISTRICT ASSOCIATION ANNOUNCED AS 2023 GREAT AMERICAN MAIN STREET AWARD SEMIFINALISTS

One of Eight Organizations Recognized for Excellence in Transforming Downtown Districts

Danville, Virginia, September 21, 2022 – Main Street America has announced The River District Association (RDA) as a 2023 Great American Main Street Award (GAMSA) Semifinalist. This prestigious award is the nation’s top award recognizing communities for their excellence in comprehensive preservation-based commercial district revitalization. A jury of professionals and leaders in the fields of community and economic development and historic preservation convened to review a nationwide pool of applicants. After thoughtful deliberation, the jury unanimously selected eight semifinalists that demonstrate exemplary use of the Main Street Approach™ to lead community-based transformation strategies in their downtowns.

The 2023 GAMSA Semifinalists are:

River District Association – Danville, Virginia

Denison Main Street – Denison, Texas

Downtown Florence Main Street – Florence, South Carolina

Metuchen Downtown Alliance – Metuchen, New Jersey

Mills 50 Main Street – Orlando, Florida

Ruston Main Street – Ruston, Louisiana

Downtown Sheridan Association – Sheridan, Wyoming

Downtown Sykesville Connection – Sykesville, Maryland

“The Great American Main Street Award is the highest honor that we grant to organizations within our network,” said Hannah White, Interim President and CEO at Main Street America. “We are proud to recognize RDA and seven fellow organizations as 2023 GAMSA Semifinalists for their excellence in transforming their downtown districts through strategically implemented economic vitality, design, promotion, and organization initiatives.”

From small towns with traditional downtowns to commercial corridors within larger cities, the 2023 GAMSA represent the diversity of the Main Street America network and the power of the Main Street Approach™. Semifinalists have generated over $872 million in local reinvestment, helped open 863 net new businesses, facilitated the creation of 4,706 net new jobs, catalyzed the rehabilitation of 1,922 historic buildings, and leveraged 178,452 volunteer hours.

RDA Executive Director Diana Schwartz says, “We are very grateful for the team at the National Main Street center for recognizing the hard work that has been done in the River District for the past decade. We are thrilled to be selected once again as one of 8 semifinalists nationally.  This is a very prestigious honor that I hope will help our long-term residents recognize that Danville is nationally recognized as a model for revitalization. We look forward to the continued success of our downtown that will illuminate a bright path to move forward and share the improvements and opportunities to all areas of our city and our region.”

The 2023 Great American Main Street Award winners will be announced at the Opening Plenary of the 2023 Main Street Now Conference in Boston, Massachusetts on March 27, 2023.

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ABOUT THE GREAT AMERICAN MAIN STREET AWARDS

The Great American Main Street Award program recognizes communities exemplifying the use of the Main Street Approach™ to revitalize commercial districts. Winners are selected from a nationwide pool of applicants by a jury of Main Street professionals and leaders in the fields of community and economic development and historic preservation. Since the award’s inception in 1995, over 100 Main Street programs have been honored as GAMSA communities. For more information, visit mainstreet.org.

ABOUT MAIN STREET AMERICA

Main Street America leads a movement committed to strengthening communities through preservation-based economic development in older and historic downtowns and neighborhood commercial districts. For more than 40 years, Main Street America has provided a practical, adaptable, and impactful framework for community-driven, comprehensive revitalization through the Main Street Approach™. Our network of more than 1,200 neighborhoods and communities, rural and urban, who share both a commitment to place and to building stronger communities through preservation-based economic development. Main Street America is a nonprofit subsidiary of the National Trust for Historic Preservation. For more information, visit mainstreet.org.

ABOUT RIVER DISTRICT ASSOCIATION

The River District Association (RDA), formerly Downtown Danville Association, was formed in 1999 to coordinate efforts to revitalize the downtown Danville, Virginia community, now called the River District.  Since 2016, RDA and the City of Danville have enjoyed accredited status under the National and Virginia Main Street Programs; the program and accreditation are recognized nationally as one of the most successful formulas for downtown revitalization.