For Immediate Release
November 23, 2010
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Mayor Thomas M. Menino today kicked-off the City’s annual Holidays on Main Streets campaign, a small business initiative designed to highlight the many festive events taking place in and around the 20 Main Streets districts through the end of December. Joining residents and business owners at a West Roxbury ski and snow board shop, Wicked Sharp, Mayor Menino also announced a district-wide contest for the best dressed storefront window, the winner of which will be recognized by the mayor the third week of December. Mayor Menino also reminded residents of the City’s annual free holiday parking hours in commercial districts and the Mayor’s Holiday Special website, which promotes deals on holiday events and shopping throughout the City. Watch event video.
“Holidays on Main Streets is our way of celebrating all that our neighborhood business districts have to offer at this festive time of year. We want to remind shoppers that some of the most unique gifts and holiday experiences can be found in their own neighborhoods,” said Mayor Menino. “This year, we’re giving folks yet another reason to visit the neighborhoods during the holiday season, with the Deck the Windows of Boston Main Streets contest. We are also continuing our annual holiday parking special to make it easier for shoppers to park and access their local businesses on weekends.”
Holidays on Main Streets
Boston has recently joined American Express and the National Trust for Historic Preservation’s National Trust Main Street Center in proclaiming Saturday, November 27, 2010, “Small Business Saturday,” in an effort to highlight the importance of supporting small businesses on the busy shopping weekend after Thanksgiving. The city will celebrate “Small Business Saturday” at Roslindale Village Main Street’s 26th Annual Tree Lighting Ceremony this Saturday afternoon.
This year’s holiday storefront decorating competition, which will include three rounds of voting, will test business’ creativity in three categories: best representation of local style and history, most inviting for customers, and most festive. Those Main Streets businesses interested in participating should contact their district office to register.
Windows must be decorated by Friday, December 3rd. The following week, a panel of local judges chosen by each participating Main Street district will select the best window display and submit that contestant to the Department of Neighborhood Development’s Office of Business Development for posting to the City’s website.
Beginning on Friday, December 10th, Mayor Menino will ask the public to vote for their favorite five storefront windows. The top five selected through the voting process will be visited by a panel of ‘local celebrity’ judges during the weekend of December 18th, and the best three windows will be honored on Tuesday, December 21st at a holiday celebration hosted by Mayor Menino at the winning business. More details about the contest can be found at www.cityofboston.gov/mainstreets.
Developed out of a partnership between the City of Boston and the National Trust for Historic Preservation, the Boston Main Streets initiative was created by Mayor Menino in 1995 as the first urban, multi-district Main Streets program in the nation, with the goal of establishing thriving commercial districts throughout the city.
Today, Boston Main Streets provides funding and technical assistance to 20 neighborhood-based Main Streets districts throughout the City of Boston and has served as a national model to urban areas seeking to revitalize neighborhood commercial districts including Baltimore, Washington, D.C., Milwaukee, Detroit, and New Orleans.
Special Holiday Parking Rules for City Shopping
As is tradition in Boston, weekend shoppers will enjoy two free hours of metered parking throughout the city’s commercial districts, including downtown, starting on “Black Friday,” November 26th and continuing on five consecutive Saturdays through December 26th. While meters will be free on these days, a two-hour time limit will be enforced by the Boston Transportation Department to accommodate as many visitors as possible in shopping districts.
Mayor Menino also said that any driver issued a non-public safety parking ticket on Boston’s streets on December 1, 2, and 3 has the option of resolving their ticket by providing a toy of equal or greater value than the ticket fine. (Public safety violations that are excluded from this program are: HP Ramp, HP-DV Parking Only, Fire Hydrant, Crosswalk, Double Parking, Fire Lane Less than 20 Feet From An Intersection and No Stopping/Standing). To participate in Toys for Tickets, drivers have from Monday, December 6th through Friday, December 10th to turn in the toys. Last year’s Toys for Tickets campaign yielded over $3,000 worth of toys.
Mayor’s Holiday Special
The 7th annual Mayor’s Holiday Special website offers visitors special deals on tickets to holiday shows and shopping in Boston. Residents can learn about this year’s great holiday events, including a comprehensive list of neighborhood tree lightings, festive trolley tours and local holiday markets, plus special discounts for local dining options and shows such as The Nutcracker and Boston Holiday Pops. The site is a unique partnership between the Mayor’s Office of Arts, Tourism and Special Events, the Greater Boston Convention & Visitors Bureau and ArtsBoston that has enabled hundreds of thousands of families and friends to enjoy the unique holiday attractions that Boston has to offer at a great price. Visit www.mayorsholidayspecial.com to find holiday events in your neighborhood.