(Washington, D.C.) – Wednesday, the National Main Street Center presented Shaw Main Streets with the first ever “Innovation on Main Street” award recognizing Art All Night: Nuit Blanche DC as an innovative event that has made a significant economic and promotional impact both in the Shaw community and in the District overall. This new national award recognizes three Main Street organizations for successful, sustainable initiatives that represent new approaches to existing downtown revitalization challenges or opportunities. The Department of Small and Local Business Development’s (DSLBD) DC Main Streets Coordinator, Cristina Amoruso, Executive Director of Shaw Main Streets, Alexander Padro, and Board Chair of Shaw Main Streets, Gretchen Wharton were present to accept the award.
Shaw Main Streets was established in 2003, through DSLBD’s DC Main Streets Program, to encourage and support small business growth and revitalization along the 7th and 9th Street, NW Corridors. Art All Night: Nuit Blanche DC, began in Shaw in 2011 when Shaw Main Streets brought Paris’ celebrated Nuit Blanche to Washington, DC. With financial support from the DC Commission on the Arts and Humanities, the Shaw Main Streets team redesigned the free overnight arts festival, and transformed it from an exclusively arts focused activity into a revenue generating event that gave equal importance to the art and to the businesses in which it took place. In 2014, the DC Commission on the Arts and Humanities partnered with Shaw Main Streets and four other DC Main Streets programs to expand the festival, making it the first joint promotion across DC Main Streets.
“During its twelve year history, Shaw Main Streets has consistently developed innovative approaches and programs that have proven to be impactful in attracting and retaining small businesses in the neighborhood,” said DSLBD Director, Ana Harvey. “We are thrilled that the organization is being recognized nationally for its efforts.”
“It's so exciting to be recognized for bringing this arts festival to DC, entertaining tens of thousands of visitors and generating record sales for our small neighborhood businesses,” said Alexander M. Padro, Executive Director of Shaw Main Streets.
“For the Main Street movement to continue to be successful and relevant, we will need to capitalize on changing trends, demographics and economies,” says Patrice Frey, president and CEO of the National Main Street Center. “We applaud Shaw Main Streets for daring to innovate and for energizing the field of downtown revitalization with fresh ideas.”
DSLBD supports eight Main Street programs throughout the District. For more information on the DC Main Streets Program, go to dslbd.dc.gov/service/dc-main-streets-program. To find out more about Shaw Main Streets, please visit shawmainstreets.org/.
About the District of Columbia Department of Small and Local Business Development
The District of Columbia Department of Small and Local Business Development (DSLBD) fosters the economic growth, development, and retention of District of Columbia based businesses, and promotes economic development throughout the District’s commercial corridors. For more information, go to dslbd.dc.gov or contact us at [email protected]. Follow DSLBD on Twitter at @SmallBizDC, or like our Facebook page www.facebook.com/smallbizdc.
About the DC Commission on the Arts and Humanities
The DC Commission on the Arts and Humanities provides grants, professional opportunities, education enrichment and other programs and services to individuals and nonprofit organizations in all communities within the District of Columbia. The Arts Commission is supported primarily by District government funds and in part by the National Endowment for the Arts. For more information, go to dcarts.dc.gov/.