DWNTWN Muncie shares "Embrace the Original" campaign goals

<p>Pedestrians cross the street in downtown Muncie June 3, 2021, during the First Thursdays ArtsWalk. Part of the DWNTWN &quot;Embrace the Original&quot; campaign is hosting multiple events over the summer. <strong>Lauren Clark, DN</strong></p>

Pedestrians cross the street in downtown Muncie June 3, 2021, during the First Thursdays ArtsWalk. Part of the DWNTWN "Embrace the Original" campaign is hosting multiple events over the summer. Lauren Clark, DN

DWNTWN Muncie recently launched its newest campaign, “Embrace the Original,” focusing on bringing attention to the local businesses, restaurants and trails Muncie has to offer.

“Being an original is more of a state of mind than a place in time — anyone can be a DWNTWN original,” said Cheryl Crowder, events director for the Muncie Downtown Development Partnership (MDDP).

There are billboards and banners featuring the campaign displayed locally, and MDDP plans to promote local businesses via news coverage and ads on TV and social media.

A street lightpost banner for the "Embrace the Original" campaign is displayed near the Canan Commons in Muncie, June 3, 2021. DWNTWN Muncie launched the campaign in May 2021 to generate interest in local businesses. Lauren Clark, DN

Each week this summer, DWNTWN is hosting a variety of events and inviting everyone to attend. Scheduled events are found on the official DWNTWN website and social media pages.

“When people are thinking, ‘I wonder what's going on this weekend,’ we hope they will look no further than DWNTWN,” Crowder said via email.

The DWNTWN campaign started in 2013 to encourage residents to invest in the heart of their city and continued in 2015 with the goal of inspiring locals to dream about Muncie’s future, according to a May 19 press release. The press release said downtown generated the most tax per acre of all areas in Muncie as a result of these campaigns.

According to the DWNTWN website, downtown Muncie is home to 23 bars and restaurants, 26 unique retail shops and 23 entertainment and arts venues. One of the businesses featured in the new campaign, Aw Yeah Comics, has been in business for eight years and has had three locations in downtown Muncie.

Aw Yeah Comics owner Christina Blanch said via email she thinks of downtown business owners and customers as her family.

“There are a lot of people that don’t even realize that downtown exists — they think everything is on McGalliard,” Blanch said. “As people find out what amazing unique stores and restaurants we have downtown, I think things will really start booming.”

Contact Lauren Clark with comments at lnclark2@bsu.edu.

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