At the very beginning of 2017, Downtown Auburn Hills was awarded a space at the Affiliate Level in the prestigious Main Street Oakland County program. Main Street Oakland County is the nation’s first and only county-wide Main Street program. On Thursday, May 11, Downtown Auburn Hills and members of its Downtown Development Authority had the opportunity to attend the Main Street Oakland County Annual Awards Gala, “The Main Event.” It was the city’s first event as an official Main Street Community, and it definitely did not disappoint!
The Main Event was held at the newly renovated Flagstar Strand Theatre for the Performing Arts located in the heart of Downtown Pontiac. This venue embodies all of the principles and mission of Main Street Oakland County; revitalization, heritage preservation, sense of place, and downtown vibrancy. The celebration included the announcement of winners within fifteen categories and acknowledged downtown staff, businesses, and volunteers. The theme for 2017 was “Broadway” and invited guests to embody their favorite play and musical. The theme and venue melded together perfectly and encompassed the luster and glory of the Flagstar Strand which recently opened its doors again in December since its $20 million-dollar revitalizing face-lift through the use of comprehensive economic development and community partnerships.
The evening was dedicated to interacting, inspiring and exchanging ideas with fellow Main Street Oakland County downtowns, historical corridors’, commercial districts and fans of Main Street from near and far. In fact, one of our DDA Board members met an individual who lived in Italy, was in town visiting, and decided to attend the event!
Although Auburn Hills didn’t take home any hardware (this year), I think I can speak for everyone and express what a wonderful time we had networking and learning from the Mains Street Oakland County downtown family and gaining support from communities who face similar challenges within their district. We all learned a little something Thursday evening, made some new friends along the way and look forward to joining our fellow Main Street communities on stage in 2018.
Director of Authorities, Samantha Mariuz