2 downtown organizations make positive move

By Ryan Carpe

March 31, 2014

DARKE COUNTY - Two key Darke County organizations are moving front and center in downtown Greenville soon.

Both the Darke County Visitor’s Bureau and Main Street Greenville are planning to relocate to the center of South Broadway, right next to the KitchenAid Experience, in a move that increases their visibility and potential outreach.

“There’s so many opportunities in that space, and that’s what’s so great about it,” said Deanna York, Executive Director at Darke County Visitors Bureau. “The ideas we have now, we can bring to fruition.”

The Darke County Visitor’s Bureau and Main Street Greenville (formerly Downtown Greenville Inc.) organizations are currently located in joint second floor offices in the Greenville Palace, where they’ve shared the space for seven years.

“There’s always been a great relationship, because the visitor’s bureau sees Main Street Greenville as a destination, and we promote it as such,” said York. “We believe in the mission of the organization and the way it’s headed.”

Now for the second time, the visitor’s bureau has asked Main Street Greenville to share the building with their strong partners.

“We’re thrilled for the opportunity,” said Amber Garrett, executive director of Main Street Greenville. “Having a partnership with the Visitor’s Bureau has been a blessing for Downtown Greenville and Main Street Greenville.”

The new location is in The Ohio Block Building at 421 South Broadway, and was built way back in 1883. Many different shops have been housed in over the past 131 years, including hardware stores, drug stores, dress shops and appliance stores.

The Darke County Visitor’s Bureau Board of Directors originally looked at the space in November, where they were immediately impressed with the historic location and ground floor accessibility.

“It offered so many opportunities for us as the visitor’s bureau to get information out to tourists, but also to educate local people,” said York. “Because it’s part of our mission to educate about the importance of tourism.”

Local businessman, Ted Abney, purchased The Ohio Block Building in 2013, and is excited to work with the two forward-thinking organizations.

“The buildings downtown were made for investments into organizations like Main Street Greenville and the Darke County Visitor’s Bureau,” he said.

The Main Street Greenville Board of Directors approved the move with the visitor’s bureau on Thursday. Both organizations have previously hoped for more downtown visibility, and are now entertaining plans to host events and showcase local talent at the extra space.

“We have a lot of very talented people in our community, including artists, painters, crafters, potters and jewelry makers,” said York. “The idea of being able to feature some of the artists in our community, that’s something we could do in this space.”

While there is no move-in date currently planned, the visitor’s bureau is committed to fulfilling their current lease in The Palace until July 31.

Currently the organizations have no set plans for an open house, but they hope to celebrate the opening with a large event coinciding with a future First Friday event.