Downtown Management Staff

The Executive Director of a Main Street program is responsible for the development, coordination, administration, documentation, and implementation of the revitalization effort. The Director initiates and coordinates a wide range of projects, from supervising promotional activities to assembling market data. Most important, however, is the director’s role as a full-time enthusiastic advocate for the commercial district and an authority on information, resources, and programs related to revitalization initiatives.

In general, as the principal on-site staff person, it is the Main Street Director’s responsibility to:

1. Develop strategies for preservation-based economic development in collaboration with the board of directors.
a. 2013-2018 Strategic plan
b, 2014 TIF plan update
c. Annual reviews
d. ODDA Implementation Plan 2016

2. Manage the administrative aspect of the revitalization program.
a. Monthly reports of day to day operation
b. Budget development and accounting
c. Annual report of program for National Accreditation
d. Website and social media ongoing updates

3. Develop and conduct ongoing public awareness and educational programs.
a. Monthly presentations to the public (scheduled) and upon request.

4. Assess and develop capacity of district businesses, institutions, and groups to carry out joint improvement activities.
a. Creation of 501c3, Friends of AMOS to allow for fundraising and use of funds other than TIF in the downtown area
b. Procure Market Data for market analysis by Committees

5. Assist individual tenants or property owners with physical improvement projects.
a. Assistance with sign and façade grant, coordination of design assistance through MSOC
b. Recommendations to planning commission for sign and building ordinances in the downtown area.

6. Help build strong, productive working relationships among partners.
a. Applied for and received 2015 DIA Inside/Out program for Ortonville.
b. Coordinate amongst groups and sponsors for seamless presentation of projects and events to the community at large.

7. Develop and maintain systems to track the progress of the Main Street program.
a. Quarterly statistical reports and Annual evaluation report

8. Represent the Main Street program at the local, state, and national levels.
a. Member of Michigan Downtown Association (MDA) Legislative & Advocacy Committee (2014 Michigan DDA TIF Reform).
b. Member of MDA Downtown Manager Certificate Committee

9. Coordinate the activities of the Main Street Committees.
a. Serve as a facilitator, coordinating people and resources to help committee volunteers work efficiently and productively.
b. Does not take place of volunteers – encourages grassroots efforts to create and maintain positive changes in the community.

CreekFest Introduces “Monarch Migration” Butterfly event


Have Wings?  Will Migrate

The CreekFest Committee is working with Brandon Schools toward a special activity to take place within CreekFest, (June 20-22) , called the Ortonville Monarch Flash-mob Migration. 

Recognizing the peril of our iconic monarch butterfly, whose numbers have decreased dramatically in recent years, kids from 4 to 94 will gather at 1:00 PM on Sunday, June 22, at CreekSide Garden next to Kearsley Creek by the Old Mill, put on or carry their monarch wings, and “fly” three blocks to the East to Heritage Garden at Church and Mill Streets.  Pets are welcome to “migrate” as well.  Little tots may join the “migration” at 1:15 at the CreekFest stage, at South and Mill Streets.

When they arrive at Heritage Garden, an adult “monarch” will tell them the story of the amazing annual monarch migration from Mexico all the way to Canada and back again.   The monarch cannot complete its life-cycle without milkweed, its larval host-plant, and milkweed has been disappearing from our local landscape, (largely due to development and herbicides).  Participants will be shown the native milkweed growing there, and milkweed seeds and starts, raised in several Brandon classrooms, will be given to each, to take home and plant in their home gardens, making sure there are nectar-bearing plants there for the butterflies once they’ve hatched.

Heritage Garden was certified a few years ago as a Monarch Waystation.  CreekSide Garden will be certified on June 22, to kick off the “migration”.  Both gardens, (native landscapes) have been certified by the National Wildlife Federation as Wildlife Habitats.  Immediately following the “Migration”, the documentary Flight of the Butterflies will be shown (free admission) at the Old Township Hall.   The film documents the discovery of the monarchs’ remarkable migration routes that until recently were completely unknown.  It was only when people began tagging monarchs that the magnitude of their migration feat was realized.  Soon after that discovery, the monarch’s numbers began to plummet, largely due to agricultural insecticides and the loss of milkweed, casting doubt on the monarch’s continuation as a species.

Elementary school teachers and students are helping by raising milkweed in their classrooms, and, with some luck, monarch chrysalises for release at the end of the “migration”.   Monarch wings and kits are available at the Village Offices for a donation to Monarch Watch.   For more information, contact Lois Robbins at (248) 969-2518

The Ortonville Monarch Migration takes place on June 22nd, the last day of CreekFest, which spans four days this year, June 19-22.  CreekFest organizers are expecting over 2000 people to show up for the fun.  In addition to the Monarch Migration, CreekFest will feature a two-day market, a bigger-than-ever parade , a Headwaters King, Queen, , a Carnival,  Beer Tent, Fireworks, Amos Orton and Wife Lookalike Contest, a 10 K run and Minnow-Mile,  an Ortonville Has Talent contest,  Bed Races, a Bridge Troll Booth, a stunt-horse, a stage with live entertainment, and lots more!

CreekFest Parade, June 21, 2014, Starting at 10am

cf13_0194 parade



With the success of last year’s 2013 Creekfest Parade, this letter is a cordial invitation to be a participant in a growing tradition in the village of Ortonville. The 2014 Creekfest Parade in Downtown Ortonville.

Last year’s parade covered a route of about 1/3 of a mile and was attended by and estimated 500+ of families, kids, adults and friends. It was taped by the local public access TV station and was broadcast on a weekly schedule. The variety of participants made it an exceptional fun event to attend. But this year, we want to “up the ante” as they say to surpass last year’s 40+ group participants.

We would like you to be a participant to “show off” your business, group or organization with your involvement. There are no fees for you to enter into the parade (excluding political entries). This is a great way to get exposure or recognition to the public that you/your business or organization are around and actively involved in the community. If your business, group or organization is in the surrounding community, don’t you want the public (new and old) to know who and where you are? Don’t you want to show off your trade or cause? This is a great way to advertise and let the public know you are ready for business and the more creativity, the more attention your business will get.

And the creativity is up to you…you can utilize vehicles, floats, trailers, tractors, ATV’s, motorcycles, Dune Buggies, decorations, bicycles, wagons, animals (w/pooper scoopers) or good ole fashion walking as a group. And yes, we said “floats”…they are welcomed and encouraged. Obviously we want all involved to be a shining star and to take pride in showing off your business. We also want this to be exciting for you and all attending. And of course what a great opportunity to get pictures or video of your owners, bosses, employees, and overall participation for your website, Twitter, Facebook or any media avenue. Some of the participants last year got great coverage (local newspaper, FB hits/tags, website postings, television coverage, etc) due to their creativity.

We really would like to encourage you to be a part. Even if it is walking or having a vehicle with the name of your business on the side of it. Below {page 2} we have a list of basic rules & regulations that we ask you to abide by. Please respond by “Thursday JUNE 19th; 5pm” as we have to place each participant and orchestrate the timing. Staging time will be from 8:30– 9:45am the morning of the parade and ‘step off will be at 10:00am sharp’.

We thank you for your consideration and hoped involvement with the “2014 Ortonville Creekfest Parade”

Warm Regards,

Randy Adam
2014 Creekfest Parade Director


CreekFest 2013 – Amos Orton Look A Like Contest

 Sponsored by Ortonville Historic Society

 Men Wanted!


Men with interesting facial hair, that is!

Contest will take place on The Old Mill front porch at 12:30pm June 29th during CreekFest.  1st place wins $50 cash and a family membership to The Old Mill Museum and Historical Society.  Bring those beards!  (must be natural facial hair – no substitutes accepted.)

Printable Poster (PDF download) Orton Lookalike Poster

Registration (PDF download) Registration -Amos Orton Lookalike Contest

Ortonville DDA Mission

The Ortonville DDA is dedicated to promoting revitalization, supporting local businesses and preserving our heritage in the Village of Ortonville by using the 4-point Main Street Approach. The Main Street approach focuses on the following areas:

  • Design – Help Ortonville look its best
  • Economic Vitality– Enhance the business environment
  • Promotions – Keep people coming back to downtown Ortonville
  • Organization – Get everyone involved

The Main Street Program advocates a return to community self-reliance, local empowerment, and recognition and development of Ortonville’s unique characteristics. What we need the most are people who are willing to share their enthusiasm, talent, and support to promote  our community.  You don’t have to come to a committee meeting every month to be a great help to your community.

What is Main Street?

What is Main Street?

Developed by the National Trust for Historic Preservation 30 years ago, the National Main Street Center encourages public-private partnerships to enhance community livability and job creation while maintaining the historic character of communities’ traditional commercial districts. The Main Street Four-Point Approach is a community-driven, comprehensive methodology used to revitalize historic downtowns nationwide, addressing the variety of challenges that face traditional business districts in a common sense way. The Main Street Approach advocates a return to community self-reliance, local empowerment and the rebuilding of traditional commercial districts based on unique assets such as distinctive architecture, a pedestrian-friendly environment and local ownership.

Why is downtown important?

A community’s central business district often accounts for as much as 30 percent of its jobs and 40 percent of its tax base. It is a community’s crossroads, a place in our hearts and minds that evoke strong emotions and helps define our identity.

What are the benefits to downtown revitalization?

  • Revitalization protects the existing tax base. Private investment in banks, businesses and commercial property and public investment in streets, sidewalks and water and sewer lines are protected and enhanced.
  • Revitalization provides an incubator for new business. A viable downtown offers opportunities and incentives for the new entrepreneurs such as lower rent and technical assistance.
  • Revitalization helps attract industrial development. Downtown reflects the overall image a community projects to potential investors. An invigorated downtown makes a very positive statement about the whole community.
  • Revitalization provides a point of focus and stability. A vibrant downtown gives the whole community and region a sense of pride and positive self-image. It also serves as an anchor that holds the community together and provides the stability necessary for economic growth.

What are the Main Street four-points?

In recent years, many approaches to downtown revitalization, from urban renewal to paint-up, fix-up projects, have failed because they focused on just one or two problems, rather than dealing with the full spectrum of interrelated issues that affect traditional commercial districts. Main Street has been successful in 1,700 communities across the country because of its comprehensive nature.

  • Organization means getting everyone working toward the same goal. The tough work of building consensus and cooperation among groups that have an important stake in the district can be eased by using the common-sense formula of a volunteer-driven program and an organizational structure of boards and committees.
  • Promotion means selling the image and promise of Main Street to all prospects. By marketing the district’s unique characteristics to shoppers, investors, new businesses and visitors, an effective promotional strategy forges a positive image through advertising, retail promotional activity, special events and marketing campaigns carried out by local volunteers.
  • Design means getting Main Street into top physical shape. Capitalizing on its best assets – such as historic buildings and traditional downtown layout – is just part of the story. An inviting atmosphere created through window displays, parking areas, signs, sidewalks, street lights and landscaping conveys a visual message about what Main Street is and what it has to offer.
  • Economic restructuring means finding a new purpose for Main Street’s enterprises. By helping existing businesses expand and recruiting new ones to respond to today’s market, Main Street programs help convert unused space into productive property and sharpen the competitiveness of business enterprises.

What makes the Main Street four-point approach unique?

The Main Street approach has eight Guiding Principles that set it apart from other redevelopment strategies:

  • Comprehensive. Downtown revitalization is a complex process and cannot be accomplished through a single project. For successful long-term revitalization, a comprehensive approach must be utilized.
  • Incremental. Small projects and simple activities lead to a more sophisticated understanding of the revitalization process and help to develop skills so that more complex problems can be addressed and more ambitious projects can be undertaken.
  • Self-help. Nobody else will save Main Street. Local leaders must have the desire and will to make the project successful. The National Main Street Center and Tennessee Main Street Program provide direction, ideas and training, but continued and long-term success depends upon the involvement and commitment of the community.
  • Public-private partnership. The public and private sectors have a vital interest in the economic health and physical viability of the downtown. Each sector has a role to play and each must understand the other’s strengths and limitations to forge an effective partnership.
  • Identifying and capitalizing on existing assets. History is on our side. Business districts must capitalize on the assets that make them unique. Every district has unique qualities, such as the distinctive buildings and human scale, which give people a sense of belonging. These local assets must serve as the foundation for all aspects of the revitalization program.
  • Quality. Build to last. Quality must be emphasized in every aspect of the revitalization program. This applies equally to each element of the program, from storefront design to promotional campaigns to educational programs.
  • Change. Skeptics turn into believers. Almost no one believes Main Street can really turn around, at first. Changes in attitude and practice are slow and definite but necessary to improve current economic conditions. Public support for change will build as the program grows.
  • Implementation-oriented. Make a difference today. Activity creates confidence in the program and even greater levels of participation. Frequent, visible changes are a reminder that the revitalization effort is under way—starting small and building on successes.