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2011 Vital Maine Communities Conference

Augusta -

AUGUSTA -  The Maine Development Foundation’s Downtown Center and Maine Preservation join forces again this year to present a dynamic two-day conference showcasing the economic and community values of downtown revitalization and historic preservation.The first day conference “Building Room In A Recession” from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. Thursday, June 9, at the National Register Kora Temple in Lewiston. The second day conference “Making Maine’s Downtown Work!” from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. Friday, June 10, at the Opera house Town Hall and in other historic locations throughot the day in Skowhegan.

National downtown expert and thought leader Kennedy Smith returns to Maine to deliver a dynamic fresh perspective on downtown asset-based development. She is the founder of the Virginia based CLUE Group and former Director of the National Trust Main Street Center. “Kennedy is not to be missed. She will inform, inspire and deliver fresh perspective about how Maine’s historic community centers are perfectly poised for a healthy economic future – information every downtown leader, planner and elected official must know,” stated Roxanne Eflin, Senior Program Director of the Maine Development Foundation and Director of the Maine Downtown Center.

Day One in Lewiston, Building Boom in a Recession, will be held in the National Register Kora Temple, a local downtown landmark. The Opening Session features developers Cyndy Taylor, Kevin Bunker, Chris Pachios and Chris Flagg discussing how $135 million in privately-funded projects since 2008 across Maine have used the new state historic preservation tax credits. Experts will also discuss how to develop successful tax credit projects; how the new statewide building and energy code applies to existing and historic buildings; how design review assists revitalization; and how to save landmark buildings, churches and create community centers. Thursday will close with Maine Preservation’s Annual Honor Awards. “Historic preservation has become the leading catalyst for community improvement in Maine, using techniques that have been successfully employed throughout the country. Sessions will share success stories,” said Maine Preservation Executive Director Greg Paxton.

Day Two in Skowhegan, Making Maine’s Downtown Work!, features 12 concurrent sessions providing exceptional training with real solutions for Maine. Topics include façade design, retail business development, property management, social marketing, organizational leadership, sustainable Green Downtowns, heritage tourism, retail and special events, and local food. Legendary Maine singer-songwriter David Mallett kicks off Friday with a special performance in the historic Skowhegan Opera House. The conference closes with the annual Downtown Achievement Awards and Reception held at Skowhegan’s historic Strand Theater, featuring the announcement of Maine’s newest Main Street community and five new Maine Downtown Network communities.

For more  information, call Roxanne at 262-3117 or visit www.mdf.org.

For More Information:

Contact Name: Roxanne Eflin

Telephone Number: (207)626-3117

Website: http://www.mdf.org

Email: reflin@mdf.org