Article Originally Published by Dawson Turner on North Texas Daily
The Denton Main Street Association (DMSA) is a nonprofit organization committed to preserving the downtown Denton area. DMSA was founded on the basis of supporting and uplifting the community and ensuring that it remains fruitful for years to come.
“That’s our mission, we want to promote and preserve downtown Denton as a vital asset of the community,” said John Cartwright, president of Denton Main Street Association and Denton resident.
Local businesses are encouraged to become members of DMSA so they will have an established marketing outlet that boosts their business.
“There’s a basic membership you can join for $150 a year,” Cartwright said. “That allows you to get your foot in the door so you can become a marketing member so we can drive business to your door. There are different levels — there are platinum sponsors, where we package different incentives for them to where their name is out there as a presenting sponsor for events like Twilight Tunes and Arts & Autos. They’re all displayed on our website.”
The DMSA also hosts and promotes events throughout the year for community members to connect to local businesses. Cartwright said DMSA aims to ensure every kind of its members’ events are promoted, from large public gatherings to small scale events.
“If you go to our social media pages like Facebook or Instagram, every week we are pushing out marketing to our members,” Cartwright said. “Sometimes it’s collective, like an event downtown for all our members to come and visit. We also do specific marketing, whether it be Cartwright’s Cafe, JT Clothiers or a local bar.”
Amid the COVID-19 pandemic, DMSA has had to innovate new ways to promote events for the community.
“With our events this year, we’ve had to do a lot of adjusting, and that’s okay because everybody seems to be understanding,” said Christine Gossett, Denton resident and executive director of DMSA. “We’re having to adapt, we had to move our spring and summer concert series into a live stream series in a partnership with Dentonradio.com. We did those live streams out of the Discover Denton Center on the Square because they had a studio we could use. We felt like that was a great way to keep bringing the music to the people.”
Gossett said DMSA has several upcoming events being planned and for residents to look out for new ones being announced soon.
“We’re working on some things for this fall that we’ll be rolling out soon,” Gossett said. “But again, they’ll be events that are either live-streamed or somehow socially distanced.”
Cartwright is outspoken about putting its members first and said it’s something he’s believed in throughout his presidency.
“Everything else takes care of itself if we can focus on members, even our smallest members,” Cartwright said. “If we just focus on their well-being and give them value for being a member of Denton Main Street, we’ve accomplished our mission. That’s always something that I’ve always zeroed in on during my presidency, is that we concentrate on our members and how we can help them.”
Cartwright said he believes the heart of Denton sets itself apart from other cities in the area.
“Every city has strip centers that have a Best Buy, Target and Walmart,” Cartwright said. “But Denton, we have something that none of the other cities have —a courthouse and an essential business district. We’re pretty proud of ours.”
The City of Denton has worked closely with the DMSA, said Jessica Rogers, City of Denton’s director of economic development and a Denton resident.
“DMSA has provided assistance to businesses in a number of ways during COVID-19,” Rogers said. “They have provided us [with] input, feedback and information directly from local businesses throughout these past four months. They have been a great sounding board for city initiatives and have reached out when they needed support from us.”
Rogers said DMSA has kept the city involved with and connected to local businesses as they adjust to unprecedented times.
“DMSA works hard to promote and foster growth among businesses in a key area of our community,” Rogers said. “They provide support to local entrepreneurs and small businesses, support the preservation of our historic downtown, and foster our creative, unique Denton culture.”
Featured image: Courtesy Denton Main Street Association
Source: North Texas Daily