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We often use the term revitalization when we talk about the work we are doing in downtown Lethbridge. But what does revitalization really mean? First and foremost, we aimed to create vibrant spaces through positive change. We are challenging the status-quo with investment opportunities and the implementation of programs and services that are helping to create revitalization.
The process is slow and continuous and although individual aspects or projects can be completed, revitalization as a whole is an ongoing process. Every time a new shop opens, a vacant building gets new tenants, a property slated for demolition is restored, or a festival light up a street, we are seeing the exciting effects of downtown revitalization.
The challenge with revitalization is that it hinges on the concept of change, which we know is a tough for many, especially when it is in relation to where we live, work or play. Commitment to change is made much easier when you have champions. Champions are those outstanding individuals, businesses, and organizations who embrace change and lead through their actions..
We are extremely lucky that we have so many champions who work tirelessly day in and day out to enhance and promote our downtown. On April 11 we will celebrate those champions at the Celebrate Downtown awards put on by the Heart of our City (HOC) committee.
Nominations for the 7 Celebrate Downtown award categories closed on March 1st with 120+ individual nominations. The Celebrate Downtown subcommittee is extremely excited by the number of nominations this year, and has a difficult task at evaluating and making a decision on who will take home the awards.
The Celebrate Downtown award event will take place from 5:30-7:30 p.m. at the Multicultural Centre (421 6th Avenue South) where downtown friends, neighbors, colleagues and community contributors will have an opportunity to honour our downtown champions while enjoying appetizers, drinks, and live entertainment.
Information on the nominees can be found at www.lethbridge.ca/downtown and by following the event on Facebook at www.facebook.co/celebratedowntownlethbridge, where there is also information on how you can get your FREE ticket today.
I also want to remind our downtown business community about the next upcoming safety seminar taking place April 16 at Casa from 11:30 a.m. to 1 p.m. The session topic will be on event safety and security including how to protect your business when there are large influxes of people in an area. More information on these monthly sessions can be found at www.lethbridge.ca/safetyeducation.I have been encouraged by recent engagement on our Downtown and continue to challenge every resident to help our downtown to be the best it can be. With our partners on the Downtown BRZ and the Heart of Our City Committee, we encourage you to contribute to the content of this column and the BRZ’s #OurDowntown video series with your comments, questions, ideas, and suggestions and engaging with us on Twitter (@DowntownLeth) using the hashtag #ourdowntown and at www.getinvolvedlethbridge.ca/ourdowntown.