Over the last couple of weeks, I have been enjoying that feeling you get when spring has begun. After this past winter, I am enjoying it even more. Spring comes with a sense of renewal, the excitement of something new and that hope for something better.
Enjoying the recent almost spring-like weather, I participated in some of the St. Patrick’s weekend activities. I started downtown and then stopped in at all the activity along Frederick Avenue. Wow, it was great to see so many people out walking up and down Frederick, cheering on St. Patrick and enjoying spring. It dawned on me though that all of us were actually enjoying St. Joseph as well. Things I have seen in other vibrant communities were happening here, the place I live and call home. That is something to enjoy.
So, did this feeling of spring just creep up on us? Not hardly with the past winter. It was a difficult and long journey just like the redevelopment of downtown and the success that has spread to the Frederick Avenue Corridor. Efforts to revitalize downtown began almost 30 years ago when the city removed the old Felix Street Mall and while it has been difficult and slow at times, there is now a feeling of renewal, something new and excitement about downtown being a better place.
Downtown’s new fortunes have not been about one thing, but many. The ongoing city investment, those entrepreneurs that took a chance when no one would, like Mod Podge and The Lucky Tiger. A commitment to the community by Mosaic Life Care in revitalizing the German American Bank Building, bringing hundreds of jobs downtown and most importantly, demonstrating not only a commitment to the community, but that downtown is a place you should invest. This message has now been heard by others who have followed with new investment, new businesses and new jobs.
There is, of course, more to come. Success begets more success, just as we are seeing along Frederick Avenue. So, as you are out and about St. Joseph enjoying the feeling of spring, take a moment and consider, maybe what you are feeling is the excitement and enjoyment of living in St. Joseph? Enjoy!