By Juyle Keeble at the Uvalde Leader-News, November 1, 2020
The Uvalde Main Street program has brought home two awards in the 2020 Texas Downtown Association President’s Awards Program, for the Four Square Friday and “Park Yourself in Uvalde” painted bench project.
Susan Rios, Uvalde Main Street manager, said this is the third year the program has had finalists in the awards. Three years ago the Coloring at the Crossroads activity book won the Spirit of Downtown award, and last year, though two nominations made it to the finals, they didn’t win.
“It is exciting and humbling to receive this award for Four Square Friday from such a distinguished organization and its panel of judges and for the public at large to honor the Park Yourself in Uvalde painted bench project, with TDA’s People’s Choice Award for Best Public Improvement,” Rios said.
Both awards were in categories for communities with a population of less than 50,000 and winners were announced starting on Oct. 27.
“Four Square Friday has become an integral part of the Uvalde Main Street program. Every second Friday of the month, downtown really comes to life and reminds all of us why we love living or visiting Uvalde. This event began approximately eight years ago and has been growing and evolving. The stores stay open late, the plaza square is full of vendors, there is music playing, people are out enjoying the sights, sounds, and smells of an evening out on the town,” Rios said.
She said the goal of Four Square Friday is to give everyone the opportunity to enjoy the historic beauty of downtown while supporting local businesses.
The painted bench project is intended to promote area artists and help draw more art-loving visitors to the area.
The idea, as conceived for Uvalde by Rios, involves supplying original art and vivid downtown seating options in the form of Victorian-style oak benches. The benches are painted by area artists and placed within the boundaries of the Uvalde Main Street district.
For more than 30 years the awards program has recognized outstanding projects, places, and people of Texas downtowns, and this year’s finalists were announced on Sept. 2 in Austin.
One hundred and four entries were submitted in 10 different categories from communities across the state, and the entries were divided into two categories, design and achievement, with separate judging panels for each group.
The Main Street nominations were for the painted bench art and seating project, in the design category for Best Public Improvement and in the achievement category for Best Promotion-Traditional Event, the Four Square Friday events.
“To see downtown Uvalde take its place among other successful and thriving downtowns in Texas means the world to me. Myself and the Uvalde Main Street program know that these awards would not have been possible without the support of the public, the downtown businesses, the building owners, and our community partners. They are the reason life and art better downtown,” Rios said.
For more information about the President’s Awards or other programs of the Texas Downtown Association, please visit www.texasdowntown.org.
See the original article: https://www.uvaldeleadernews.com/articles/main-street-program-wins-two-more-awards/