Albany Street flourishes
With delegation of responsibility, HCBD is stepping up to the plate
By Willie Kiernan
The Historical Cazenovia Business District held their meeting last Wednesday and voiced some opinions that this newspaper, by virtue of last week's headline (Albany Street rents rising), was negatively portraying the downtown shopping area. The story was more aimed at a few tenants moving out of current spaces. That was about, out with the old, this is about in with the new. And from the looks of things, Albany Street is thriving.
"One of the things we did was to summarize our accomplishments for the year," said HCBD Chair Dave Eldridge.
In a cohesive effort to create a greater amount of foot traffic on Albany Street, the HCBD went about fundraising to support a broad advertising campaign. Laura Benoit from Cazenovia College designed the campaign using billboards and various media to target the Fourth of July and the winter holiday season.
"Actually, I thought it would be slow, but it really picked up as the holidays approached," said Naomi DeMuth of the Chameleon Gallery. "And I think it must have been due to our concerted effort with advertising."
The summertime birdhouse campaign was one of Eldridge's original ideas. He built the wooden structures with donations from Caz Lumber and different artists and craftspeople decorated them with individual uniqueness. After a reception at the Lincklaen House and an auction at the Brae Loch with Bill Magee presiding, they raised more than $3,300.
"People were saying, now that we know what others are doing, next year it'll be even better," said Eldridge.
Other means of fundraising included a Madison County grant, Mens' and Ladies' Night Out, grants from the chamber and a grant from the Farmers' Market.
"Dave has brought an enthusiasm and energy to the committee," said Karen Schai of the chamber office.