Don’t close doors to new residents | RecordCourier.com

Don’t close doors to new residents

I write today to voice my opinion about this community; what I've learned since moving here three years ago and why I believe in Main Street programs. As a community, this is a wonderful place to live. I know many would wish we would "close the doors" to new residents, but that would mean certain demise at some point, for if we are not growing, we are moving backward. In my years of living in various parts of this country, I've experienced several downtowns with uncertain futures and the near death of small town America. So why do you ask, does this have anything to do with our local towns in the Carson Valley?

Living in a community such as ours is a privilege. People simply care about this area; our natural beauty, their neighbors and the resounding overall quality of life that we all experience every day. It is with that sense of community that people volunteer for the various programs and it is their support that makes us what we are today. Can it be better? I believe there is always room for improvement and it is with the residents ideas and support that make it all happen. With controlled growth, diversity and commitment of our public officials, private citizens, business and property owners, consumers (yes, that also includes visitors and tourists) and our neighbors that we can realize the benefits to programs such as the only two Main Street programs that currently exist here in Nevada. They not only create an identity for the community, but can stimulate and excel in areas such as historic preservation, economic revitalization and recognizable design improvements to the area. Programs such as Shop Small/Shop Local enhance the viability of our towns creating renewed interest for everyone. I probably could write 10 pages on what I've learned from you, my neighbors and friends being out and about our towns as to why we all love this community.

All this takes me to the recent article written in The Record-Courier, Friday, April 7, about Main Street Minden program receiving funding from the Town of Minden. As Main Street Minden's Executive Director, and on behalf of our Board of Directors, we are grateful for the extended financial support of our new program (1 ½ years old) from the Town of Minden for another year. Main Street programs are not businesses, their purpose is to support our town, far beyond the municipal responsibility to residents for the infrastructure. They exist, to promote and grow areas that need attention due to building vacancies, preserve historic and cultural identity, revitalize and enhance the beauty of the Town plus create that sense of family community through events a vibrant downtown district. Main Street programs at their core truly create, through volunteers, the "heart and soul" of a community.

A favorite quote of mine is, "When work, commitment, and pleasure all become one and you reach that deep well where passion lives, nothing is impossible," by unknown author. I would hope everyone finds what fuels their passion about our community, engages and if you haven't already, becomes involved at some level. Main Street Minden will continue its efforts to engage the businesses and residents in making this a place where our children will continue to thrive, find purpose and be able to work and live as adults in our little slice of heaven on earth. Our volunteer motto: "Make a difference…everyday…to someone." Come join us and find your passion.

Connie Billington is the executive director of Main Street Minden and a Carson Valley resident