Celebrate St. Patrick's Day in downtown Parkersburg

St. Patrick's Day

Whether your're looking for family fun or a night out, you can celebrate St. Patrick's Day in downtown Parkersburg! Here are a few great ideas:

• Stop by the DownTown Specialty Bakery to pick up your favorite sweet treats! They'll be green but they won't be healthy :) Shop will be open from noon-5pm.

• Join Parkersburg Brewing Co. at their St. Patrick's Day Party at the Parkersburg Brewing Co featuring the Dennis McClung Blues Band, an Irish food menu and release of two new Irish beers! $5 cover charge

• Indulge in more than beer! Bring out your creative side with the Parkersburg Art Center's FineTime St. Patrick's Day Acrylic Painting Party. Advanced registration required.

• Celebrate St. Patrick's Day at The Blennerhassett Hotel with their Stein & Dine with New Belgium Brewing Co.. Enjoy a four-course meal at this festive evening with flavorful brews and pairings. Reservations required.

Downtown PKB Launches New Partner Program

Downtown PKB announced the launch of our new Partner Program to those in attendance during our annual board of directors meeting last week at the Parkersburg Brewing Company. The Partner Program is designed to help move our organization forward in terms of financial diversification and will serve as a way to connect the community to our mission. Interested community members and businesses of any size who believe in our revitalization efforts can become a Partner of Downtown.

“I look at the Partner Program as a way to show my commitment to downtown Parkersburg and encourage public participation,” says Susan Schuchts, Downtown PKB board and executive committee member.

“We are a volunteer driven organization and our success depends on our ability to mobilize community resources,” says Wendy Shriver, executive director of Downtown PKB.

Tax-deductible donations allow us to diversify our funding and continue providing a unique array of events for the whole family, while also promoting our downtown merchants throughout the year. Individuals may join our Partner Program with a gift of $100 or more, while businesses have options ranging from $250 to $2,500.

Our mission is to promote downtown Parkersburg, foster economic opportunity and create community vitality. Our goal is to create a vibrant commercial district that will provide downtown businesses, workers and nearby residents with the goods and services they need, as well as create educational, entertainment and tourism opportunities. Our non-profit organization is part of the West Virginia OnTrac (Organization, Training, Revitalization and Capacity) Program. The OnTrac program was created by Main Street West Virginia and the National Historic Trust to help cities create a comprehensive approach to economic revitalization and historic preservation by focusing on four key areas: design, promotion, economic restructuring and organization.

In 2016, Downtown PKB welcomed eight new businesses to our downtown, performed two Cleanup/Greenup events to beautify our community, completed three Vacant Storefront displays, held three downtown business promotions and sponsored seven events in downtown, such as the Taste of Parkersburg and Winterfest.

For more information about benefits of our Partner Program, such as advance online purchase of ticket sales and/or reserved seating for select Downtown PKB events, recognition and promotion of your business on our social media sites, visit our website at downtownpkb.com/donate or contact Wendy Shriver, executive director, by email at wendy@downtownpkb.com.

State of Main 2016

Take a look at the amazing progress made by Downtown PKB in 2016 in our most recent annual report

Downtown PKB is a member of the Main Street America network. We're also sharing the State of Main publication with you, which provides a detailed look back on all that the organization has accomplished in 2016, as well as a platform to explore cutting edge ideas and trends in the commercial district revitalization field.

Download the natioanl publication here: State of Main

A day in downtown for the whole family

The end of winter is in sight and March will be here in less than two weeks – can I get an Amen on that? While we’ve been fortunate to have a pretty mild winter so far, I’m betting all of us are looking forward to the start of spring and the chance to get everyone outside on a Saturday afternoon.

While the March weather is always unpredictable, we’re hoping mother nature cooperates for the fourth annual Classic Plastics Toy & Comic Expo and the second annual Savor Saturday on March 4th.

The Toy & Comic Expo promises a fun and memorable experience for the whole family, with its first ever two-day show and over 80 vendors. Celebrity guests include Steve Cardenas, who starred as Rocky DeSantos, the 2nd Red Ranger in the original Power Rangers’ and later as the Blue Ranger in the Power Rangers Zero.

A creative collaboration with Classic Plastics Toy Store, Savor Saturday was created to highlight and promote downtown restaurants and showcase their unique offerings. The event seeks to provide exposure and value to the participating restaurants, and draw both new and repeat customers to downtown throughout the day. After enjoying the Expo, families are encouraged to stick around downtown and sample savory treats from twelve different participating downtown restaurants:

·         Parkersburg Brewing Company

·         The Coffee Bar

·         Corner Café

·         Crystal Café

·         The Daily Grind

·         DownTown Specialty Bakery

·         Starbucks at the Blennerhassett Hotel

·         Timely Brew

·         Village Cakery

·         Toscana in Appalachia

·         Maka Mia Pizza

·         Breads & Beyond Bakery

Samples from each participating restaurant will be available for just $1 and customers will receive one entry into a grand-prize drawing for every sample purchased. The grand prize will be dinner for two at any downtown restaurant and two tickets to the Taste of Parkersburg annual event on Saturday, June 3rd.

The Toy & Comic Expo will be held at the Parkersburg Art Center (725 Market St.) and begins at 10 am on Saturday, March 4th. The Expo runs until 5pm on Saturday and re-opens on Sunday, March 5th at 11 a.m. Maps and more information on participating restaurants for Savor Saturday will be located at the entrance to the Parkersburg Art Center on Saturday, March 4th.

Folks, this is our chance to show our support for small and local businesses who do an enormous amount of good in our community. When we do something as simple and easy as enjoying a Saturday downtown, eating lunch and showing up can mean real transformation of our city. Our participation in a fun event that includes the entire family can mean the difference between a new business choosing to take a leap of faith or playing it safe and keeping their dreams on hold. The future of our downtown depends on us.

Date night in Downtown PKB!

Date night in downtown Parkersburg was something that I had never considered as a full family event until recently.

Of course I've gone on date nights in downtown....dinner at Mangos, drinks at the Blenny, or catching a summer concert at the Point but it has always (well, for the last 4 years anyway) required me to secure a baby sitter for the littlest person in our family. 

Last Saturday night, with the help of the Market Street YMCA's first Parents Night Out,  planning for a date night got a whole lot easier! 

The Market Street YMCA hosted its first Parents Night Out Saturday February 11th, open to children 6 weeks to 12 years. Parents night Out, which runs from 6pm-9pm, consists of a movie, a craft and a snack. February's Parents Night Out was a small group but received a lot of positive response from kids and parents alike, according to the coordinator of the Market Street YMCA, Missy Wigal. The cost of the program is $20 per child, $15 for siblings. 

We dropped off our favorite girl to play with her friends and then headed out on foot {we parked once, in front of the Y with no issues--there is not a parking issue in downtown!} for our date night. Planning a head a bit and since it was the unofficial Valentine's Day date night, we made a reservation at Mangos Latin Bistro. Our first stop though, was right across the street from the Market Street YMCA, the Parkersburg Brewing Co. There we worked on checking off sampling another WV craft beer on our list. I was happy to see many large groups enjoying the newest brewery atmosphere that is perfect for any celebration. 

I am proud of the transformation Downtown PKB is making. Family friendly, fun atmosphere and unique eats is what awaits you on your next trip downtown.
— Kristin Meeks, entrepreneur

Then we were on to our reservation at Mangos. Due to Parents Night Out and the Valentine's Day weekend, they chose to open their doors on a Saturday night when they are typically closed. The food was amazing and there was many couples and families there enjoying dinner. Since it was a unseasonably warm evening, we decided for a walk after dinner. We ended up at Spats at the Blennerhassett Hotel for drinks where we ran into another set of parents enjoying their night out!    

We walked up past Classics Plastics and just missed them, as I was hoping to challenge my husband to a old school arcade duel--though I made a mental note to get there before 8pm next month. We were short on time and temps were dropping, so we decided on desert at our last stop back to the Parkersburg Brewing Co. I may have missed out on the apple strudel at the Point Park Market Place during their Valentine's Day Dinner, but for a Nutella lover, "the Deb" at the Brewing Co. hit the spot.

I am proud of the transformation Downtown PKB is making. Family friendly, fun atmosphere and unique eats is what awaits you on your next trip downtown.

Kristin Meeks is a small business owner and a ongoing cheerleader for economic development in the Mid Ohio Valley. Kristin currently serves on the board of directors for Downtown PKB and is the Communications Chair.