5-10-06 - Durant received two awards at the 17th Annual Oklahoma Main Street Awards banquet held Tuesday in Oklahoma City, while Ardmore businesses took home two awards.
The Oklahoma Main Street Program honored Main Street communities, organizations, and individuals for their outstanding achievements.
Approximately 236 entries were nominated in 19 competitive award categories. Approximately 675 people joined together with state legislators at the National Cowboy and Western Heritage Museum to recognize this year’s nominees.
Durant won in the following categories:
Best Creative Fundraising Effort – Mega Bull ‘05
Best Interior Design Project – Three Valley Museum
Main Street Coffee in Ardmore was honored with the award of “Best Main Street Business in the State”. Antiques Et Cetera was honored with the award for “Best Main Street Window Display”.
The evening culminated with State Senator Jay Paul Gumm of Durant being recognized with the prestigious honor of Friend of Main Street. He was recognized with Representative Debbie Blackburn for legislation they authored in 2005 relating to historic preservation tax credits.
Senator Gumm has been a supporter of the local Main Street program since inception. After becoming Senator, he has been able to facilitate improvements on a statewide basis. He is involved in budgeting as well as authoring bills to help communities revitalize their downtowns.
Phyllis Bond was recognized as Durant’s Board Member of the Year. She has served several years as the Promotion Committee Chair and is also on the Board of Directors. She owns Bride & Groom and always leads by example. She was selected for the honor by her peers.
Durant received their first statewide award in 2002 for Best Community Education/Public Awareness. The award was for the website www.durantmainstreet.org. In 2003, awards were received for Best Results in Strengthening Business (for the group health insurance program), Top Economic Restructuring Story (for the group health insurance program), and Outstanding Program Administration. In 2004, Durant Historical Society was recognized for their façade renovation, and Durant Main Street also won for the façade renovation of the Pool Hall.
Durant Main Street Program Manager Donna Dow commented, “I want to congratulate the Three Valley Museum volunteers for all their hard work. The Historical Society did a first-class job on the building, and it will be a tremendous asset to our Downtown for many years to come.”
“The banquet program mentioned that history is an important part for a community that instills pride and adds to the town’s economic opportunities. This is so true, and I’m always proud to show visitors what a tremendous asset and showpiece we have at 4th & Main.”
Dow was extremely pleased with the award for Mega Bull ‘05. “This fundraiser was a joy to work on. We created it from scratch, and it presented its challenges. Our organization is truly grateful for the Choctaw Casino and Resort for allowing us to use their facilities and for First Texoma National Bank stepping up to be the co-sponsor. All our other sponsors and the crowd followed to make it the success it was.”
“Volunteers pitched in with over 750 hours of time to ensure the event’s success, and over 4000 people attended Mega Bull ’05. This got the attention of the judges. Our Organization Committee did a wonderful job, and they are to be commended. We think Justin Dow did an excellent job producing the event and look forward to the benefit it will provide to our community.”
The Oklahoma Main Street Program is a statewide downtown revitalization program providing training, resources and technical assistance to 44 active Main Street communities across Oklahoma. Main Street's preservation-based approach to business district revitalization has been scaled to the resources of small cities and urban neighborhood business districts.
Starting with many small changes taking place over a period of years, Main Street builds local leadership and local commitment to care for and manage the area for many years. The groundwork laid by the local leadership demonstrates that the district is active and vital, attracting more and more investment into the area.