“What you leave behind is not engraved in stone monuments, but what is woven into the lives of others.”

― Pericles

Hello and Happy Spring Main Street Gardnerville!

Spring is finally making an appearance! Oh, happy days of warm sun on our skin and the anticipation of spending time outside to explore and enjoy once again everything our beautiful area has to offer, but more importantly… the kickoff of our Main Street Summer Series of events! Not only are the wine walks coming, but MAIN STREET GARDNERVILLE IS TURING 15!!  You know what that means, downtown district-wide celebrations every chance we get!

I recently got a fortune cookie whose fortune read: Travelling East will bring you great fortune. Turns out, that fortune cookie was one smart cookie. The last month was a whirlwind and with luck and timing on my side, I was able to represent MSG at some amazing conferences over the month. I found myself singing good ol Willie Nelson’s “On the Road Again” as I packed my bags and traveled East.

First up was an incredible opportunity to attend the AIANTA Nevada Tribal Tourism Conference at the historic Stewart Indian Colony. It was a very moving experience listening to our local and regional American Indian community speak on ways we can support their efforts in sharing about their culture and land in respectful and sustainable ways. We look forward to working with our newfound partners and collaborators on how we can support and create meaningful projects together.

From there we were off to Main Street America Now conference in beautiful Boston, Massachusetts. Daphne Hillyer, our MSG Board member, and Promo Committee Chair, and I were two of over 1900 in attendance at this year’s event. Main Street America did a phenomenal job of creating informative sessions and speakers to not only renew our passion for what we do but also give us the tools and insight to accomplish our goals and help set future goals. We spent a great amount of time enjoying the company of our Nevada Main Street Family. Nevada has close to 20 communities throughout the state looking to establish a Main Street program like ours in their communities. Their efforts are led by some of the most incredible, passionate people I have had the honor of getting to know. Big shout out to Shari Davis the herder of cats and the state coordinator of the Nevada Main Street program, for her tireless efforts in supporting our Main Street programs. She is AMAZING.  Here are the highlights of Boston in under a minute! 

I just returned from beautiful Ely, Nevada where I attended the Nevada Art Council Basin to Range Exchange 2023. Hats off to Erica Hill our regional coordinator, Tony Manfredi, Executive Director of NAC, and their entire team for a fantastic 3 days. I met some incredible artists, performers, and leaders in the art and culture community throughout Nevada. Needless to say, I am pretty excited to continue our mission of supporting our local artists, performers, and culture while continuing to find ways the community can experience the tremendously talented neighbors that call this community home and celebrate the rich culture that twines us together.

Speaking of Art – We unveiled our newest Art piece for 2023 Save the Date Cards at this year’s Volunteer Gala.  The watercolor is called Main Street Wine Walk by local artist Tina Forkner and it is simply perfect. Thank you, Tina, for creating such an incredible work of art for us. This beautiful piece is below for you to enjoy.  Tina will be selling reproductions of the print, and because her generous heart has no end, she will also be donating proceeds of the sales of this print back to Main Street Gardnerville1 See what did I say? Tremendously talented neighbors live here.

Not only did we gain an art piece, but we also gained a volunteer in Tina.  MSG has a way of welcoming volunteers that stay. I say this because April is Volunteer Appreciation Month and when we host our Volunteer Gala, I witnessed the beauty of a room full of volunteers MSG has welcomed in over the years celebrating our accomplishments together. This is my favorite celebration simply because we take time to pause and thank our volunteers for everything they contributed over the year(s) and acknowledge those who have gone above and beyond. Last year Main Street Gardnerville volunteers dedicated 3474 HOURS of volunteerism which is equivalent to over $104 THOUSAND dollars in in-kind value. We had over 50 of those dedicated volunteers in attendance, including some of our local community leaders. I cannot express my gratitude enough to each and every one of them – they ARE Main Street Gardnerville! Congratulations to our Volunteer of the Year Sophia Roussakis; Business of the Year CV Flyte; Promo Committee Acknowledgment Mike Olson; Design Committee Acknowledgment Mike Henningsen; District Vitality Acknowledgment Allie Galloway; Organization Committee Acknowledgment Debbie Ham. Thank you again to Commissioner Chair Mark Gardner and Town of Gardnerville Board member and Main Street Founding Father Jim Park for delivering such kinds words to our volunteers BIG THANK YOU to our gracious hosts Woodett’s Diner, Christelle, and Chef Remon for an exceptional meal to be remembered for years to come. And an even bigger THANK YOU to our Organization committee, Teresa Bennis, Beth Watts, and my co-hostess with the mostess Meredith for pulling this all together. Check out the highlights of the event HERE

Have I mentioned we LOVE volunteers? If you are interested in joining us, we would love to have you.  Mark your calendars for the upcoming opportunities to lend a hand at the Heritage Park Garden Earth Day Clean Up Saturday, April 22 at 10 am at the Gardens and the Sweep the Town event on Saturday, May 6th, 9 am! More hands, the quicker the work. Scroll down to learn more and how you can help.

I promised myself I would not be long-winded… again, and yet here I am. Thank you to those loyal 5 readers who have made it this far. Make sure to show those businesses down at the bottom some love and click on their ads, follow their pages, and support them by shopping locally. They are the reason we do what we do, and what makes this area so unique and cool. Trust me, I have seen many places and I will say our home is AH-MAZING.  Let’s keep it flourishing, remember to shop local, tip generously, and check on your neighbors.

See you on the streets…SOON Main Street!

Jen Nalder, Program Director
Main Street Gardnerville