All you need to do is drive through downtown Sallisaw to realize that something is going on. From new businesses and restaurants to the pocket park and updated store fronts, the signs are obvious.
Margaret Perry, the owner of Alley and Elm as well as The Fringe, said several businesses have recently opened in the area that are sure to bring shoppers to the downtown area, and more are on their way.
“We are really thrilled” to see the rapid growth, Perry said. “All of a sudden downtown is coming together. This is something we have been working toward for 15 years.”
Recent additions like Earth’s Food Barn, Mimosa Market, Studio 3:16 and Becca’s Bargains have added even more unique shopping experiences. Downtown has also seen the addition of new consignment shops and a pet groomer. Plus, with Ruger’s and Shadee Oak Wing Shack as lunch and dinner venues one can enjoy several hours in the area.
A busy downtown area is also good for the city’s local economy. State figures show that when a person spends one dollar in their local economy it will roll over several times and have a total impact equal to $5 dollars. So buying local makes good financial sense.
Sallisaw Mayor Ernie Martens added, “It’s really exciting to see the revitalization of the old buildings and to see how busy the downtown area is. It’s like most of the buildings have been reborn.”
Other exciting projects are on the list of possibilities as well. The Chamber of Commerce and City of Sallisaw are looking into the prospect of adding music speakers to the downtown area. Imagine strolling the street and doing window shopping at Christmas while listening to Christmas music.
Several organizations including The Main Street Association, The Chamber of Commerce, The City of Sallisaw and developers such as Larry Crowe have all worked hard to plan, hold fundraisers and put in numerous hours and finances to get to this point.
Mayor Martens noted that city sales tax figures are also up by over $200,000 from original projections.
Perry added, “The goal is to market Sallisaw’s downtown area as a destination spot for shoppers. Shopping local is always the key.”
Laura Brown, KXMX Staff Writer
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