Luverne Business Owners Team Up To Revitalize Downtown

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By Amanda Wade

A group of small business owners wants to see downtown Luverne booming again, so they are taking matters into their own hands.

Several Luverne business owners say their downtown has seen better days, so they have recently formed a Downtown Merchants Committee in an effort to bring more people and more shops to the area.

Throughout Downtown Luverne, several store fronts are vacant and store owners, like Martha Dickey, say there is not as much foot traffic as there used to be, "For those of us who have businesses in Luverne, times are really bad right now, and as a native of Luverne, I would love to see it like it was when I was a little girl."

Gary Mitchell, one of the founders of the Downtown Merchants Committee says, "This was a really busy place. We had three red lights back then instead of two because there was so much traffic and all of the stores were full."

In an effort to bring that back, nine business owners decided to form the Downtown Merchants Committee by teaming up to encourage the community and people traveling though to stop in and shop. Sherry Prevett, a committee founder, says they will be planning monthly events, like an Easter egg hunt in April with the Easter bunny and family oriented activities, to revitalize the community spirit of downtown, "We would like to do like maybe some musical things maybe say with the high school bands just to bring people out in the evening as well, so that the lights are on and it seems more open and more inviting at that time."

The committee founders say they have had two meetings so far, and plan to have at least two each month.

Committee members are working with the Crenshaw County Chamber of Commerce to find new ways to engage the community.