Saturday May 25th, 2024 4:01AM

Ten years of Main Street Gainesville

By by Ken Stanford
GAINESVILLE - Main Street Gainesville celebrated its 10th anniversary with its annual meeting and awards banquet Wednesday night - and a man who has been a leader of the downtown business community for years says he wishes the Main Street affiliation has happened sooner.<br> <br> Lorrie Schrage, the owner of Saul&#39;s department store, has watched downtown evolve from the time it was the only retail center in Hall County to a period when merchants were fleeing to suburban shopping centers to the revitalization of the area - the downtown Gainesville we see today. <br> <br> A second generation downtown businessman, Schrage says his father would be proud of the way downtown has bounced back in recent years to once again become a vibrant part of the local economy. Schrage says downtown was never dead but it was probably dying; however, now, business is good and he sees a bright future for downtown.<br> <br> During Wednesday night&#39;s meeting, thirteen Golden Nail Awards were handed out by Main Street Gainesville. The awards are for downtown remodeling, renovation or new construction projects - representing an investment of more than $4.3 million dollars and the creation or restoration of 109 jobs. Main Street Gainesville says since 1995, nearly $72 million has been invested in downtown, creating or retaining more than 400 jobs.<br> <br> The Gainesville City Council was also recognized for &#34;the great partnership between local government and the private sector.&#34; The council was singled-out for three specific downtown projects, which are listed below.<br> <br> GOLDEN NAIL WINNERS<br> <br> 1. Princeton Salon & Day Spa - Karen & Heath Gayton - 200 Washington St. Ste. B<br> 2. SEABONES Restaurant - Rocky & Jeanna Pridgen/Brian & Angela Key -<br> 200 Washington St., Ste. A<br> 3. Inside/Out Accents - Katie King/ Jenny Blankenship - 114 Washington Street<br> 4. Across the Pond - MariBeth & Sonny Hartsook - 115 Bradford Street<br> 5. Sunrise Bakery Café - Kathy Vitti - 118 Main Street<br> 6. The Upper Deck Skate Shop - Mary Praglia - 118 Main Street<br> 7. The Bistro - Debra & Doug Harkrider - 118 Main Street<br> 8. Chandelle & Dan Summer - 107 Washington Street<br> 9. The Summer House - Joy Bilthouse - 100 Washington Street<br> 10. Shuler's Great Outdoors - Jerry Schuler - 310 Broad Street<br> 11. The Simpson Company - Frank Simpson - 425 Spring Street<br> 12. Fox, Chandler, Homans, Hicks & McKinnon, LLP - Graham McKinnon -125 Maple Street<br> <br> CITY OF GAINESVILLE PROJECTS<br> <br> 1. West Academy/Washington Street<br> 2. Train Restoration<br> 3. Square Repaving<br>
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