ROCK SPRINGS — The Rock Springs Main Street/Urban Renewal Agency recently released their 2018 Annual Report.
Twelve new businesses opened their doors in downtown Rock Springs and created 18 new full time jobs. Those businesses included:
- JD Bookkeeping Service
- Sidekicks Wine and Book Bar
- Wildflower and Company
- Lotus Beauty Shop
- Wildwood Gifts at CJ’s Signs
- Iron Cowboy Crossfit
- Muttley Crue Pet Grooming
- Square State Brewing
- The 307 Real Estate Group
- Wyoming Holiday Store
- Big Rooster Tattoo Company
- High Country Realty
The Rock Springs Main Street/Urban Renewal Agency won the Great American Main Street Award last spring, along with Downtown Oregon City, Oregon and Howell Main Street in Howell, Michigan.
According to Chad Banks, Rock Springs Main Street/Urban Renewal Agency Manager, it was the equivalent of the Oscars for downtown.
“It was exciting to share this award with our community and be able to brag about how great Rock Springs is,” Banks said.
Able Hands was especially recognized for their volunteer efforts. They watered the flowers in downtown and put in hundreds of hours each summer. More 3,777.25 volunteer hours were recorded in 2018.
Bunning Hall continues to be a popular venue for various events. In 2018, 75 events took place in Bunning Hall with attendance topping at 8,100.
Banks said Broadway Theater is still the place for local entertainment as it had 110 events, with attendance topping at 7,600.
With funding from Sweetwater BOCES, an internship/scholarship program was introduced. This gives a student from Western Wyoming Community College or the Rock Springs High School the opportunity to get some “hands-on” experience at the Broadway Theater.
Performing Arts enthusiasts kicked off the holiday season by attending the local production of The SantaLand Diaries by the local Actors’ Mission Group at The Broadway Theater.
Open Mic Night was introduced as a way to engage the community. The event was well-received and will continue into 2019.
Popular and sold out shows included:
- Chancey Williams and the Younger Brothers Band
- Darryl Worley
- Josh Blue
- Bar J Wranglers
- The Barefoot Movement
- Kenny Ahern
Support for the Broadway Theater continues to grow as 103 members signed up for the “Friends of the Broadway” patron program. Information regarding the program can be found on their website broadwayrs.com or those interested in the program may call the URA at 307-352-1434.
Attendance rose at popular events in downtown such as the Rods & Rails (3,216), Sweetwater Blues & Blues (1,530), Brown Bag Concert Series (1,456), Carriage Rides (1,282), Santa Saturdays (893), Halloween Stroll (over 3,500), Witches Day Out (119) and Salsa Sip & Stroll (144).
The Rock Springs Main Street/Urban Renewal Agency received grants from Wyoming Cultural Trust Fund, Wyoming Arts Council, Wyoming Main Street, AARP and Dominion Energy.
It was #MyRockSprings mania as Rock Springs was named one of the top 20 towns for a chance to win $500,000 for renovations in the downtown area by Deluxe and Small Business Revolution, a “business make-over show.”
“Even though we didn’t make it to the Top Ten, it was still a great opportunity to promote Rock Springs on a national level,” Banks mentioned.
Fodor’s Travel named Downtown Rock Springs “One of America’s 25 Cutest Main Streets in Small(er) Towns.”
The agency received the 2018 Wyoming Main Street Innovation Award for the Downtown Putt Around mini golf course.
Businesses and individuals in downtown Rock Springs were recognized for their success during the 2018 Downtown First Awards/Volunteer Appreciation Reception. Local artist, Susie Von Ahrens created the awards.
- Outstanding Downtown Business – Bi-Rite/Remedies Grill/Sweet Sage
- Outstanding New Business/Merchant – Coal Train Coffee Depot
- Better Rock Springs Beautification Award – Dominion Energy
- Spirit of Downtown Award – Carl and Lynne Demshar
- Outstanding Individual – Jason Medler (Bike & Trike/Java Peddler)
- Outstanding Volunteer – Connie Lucas
The Rock Springs Main Street/Urban Renewal Agency is charged with the redevelopment of downtown Rock Springs. As part of their mission, there are three standing committees – Business Development, Promotions and Arts and Culture.