On Sunday, September 18th, Rochester Main Street hosted a volunteer cleanup day on North Main Street and in Central Square, the park where the Parson Main monument is located.
First, volunteers worked to clean up the walkway that leads pedestrians from North Main Street to the Wyandotte Mill. They picked up trash, weeded the gardens, and extended the Edison lighting in order to light up the path at night.
According to Todd Radict, RMS board member and owner of Skele-Tone Records, the improvements to Factory Court South (or Wyandotte Alley, depending on who you ask) were much needed.
“For years I’ve wanted to see improvements to that alley,” said Radict. “It’s so nice to see the lights at night. There’s still a lot of work to do, but this is a great start!”
Radict says the organization targeted the walkway because “it hasn’t had the best reputation over the years”. He hopes that by hanging lights and cleaning it up, other groups will consider utilizing the space for outdoor dining, live entertainment, or public art.
“We really wanted to get the space ready for PorchFest on September 25th,” said Radict. “We hope it will be a good place to have a band for the day.”
In Central Square, volunteers planted hundreds of plant bulbs that will bloom next spring.
According to Carole Glenn, RMS board member, the planting in Central Square is part of a larger, long-term initiative to add more life and color to the park.
“Our goal this year has been to improve the look of Central Square,” said Glenn. “We started by adding a ‘Welcome to Downtown’ sign, planted flowers around Parson Main, and installed hanging flower baskets on the fence. On Sunday, we planted a variety of plant bulbs along the perimeter of the park.”
Glenn says that the outside perimiter of the park will now have multi-colored lilies, crocuses, and daffodils. The plants were chosen because they are “hearty” and will bloom annually, adding vibrancy and plant diversity to the visual landscape of what Glenn says is “the first thing you see when you enter downtown.”
“It’s the first impression,” said Glenn. “We are focusing our energy on beautifying of these areas because it directly benefit our residents, visitors, and the overall downtown economy. We want people to see Rochester for what we already know it to be, a vibrant community of hardworking, dedicated people working together to create an eclectic selection of shops, services, and restaurants.”
Rochester Main Street is a 501c3 nonprofit organization dedicated to the preservation and revitalization of downtown. If you would like to make a financial contribution or become a volunteer, visit www.rochestermainstreet.org to learn more.