The artistic crew at Birdie's Cafe is preparing to launch a project that will not only highlight Main Street businesses, but will also raise money for a local grant program.
Sherri Hosfeld Joseph, owner of Birdie's Cafe on Main Street in Westminster, recently renovated the facade of her building. She was able to complete the project with help from a facade grant available through the city of Westminster.
She said she wanted to give back to the program that helped her. At the same time, as a Main Street business owner, she said she is always interested in promoting the thriving downtown area.
Hosfeld Joseph enlisted the help of her Birdie's staffers who also happen to be artists in their own right -- Lance Garber is a photographer and Emily White is a graphic designer. The three crafted the idea to create a poster totally unique to Westminster that would highlight the small business community in the Main Street area while at the same time raising some money to give back to the city's facade grant program.
"I believe in giving back and this is something I can do to give back to a program that helped my business make a vast change in its appearance and bring more people in the door," Hosfeld Joseph said.
Hosfeld Joseph, along with Garber and White, created a poster that features photographs of letters from business signage and buildings in the Main Street corridor. According to Hosfeld Joseph, her crew shot more than 500 picutures this summer and narrowed it down to 62 that would appear on the poster.
"The main idea behind all this is that downtown Westminster absolutely can thrive and we are an incredible resource and if we didn’t exist people would be really really sad that there was no downtown Westminster," Hosfeld Joseph said.
"With all the chains and big business, it can be easy to forget that everything that’s out there you can get right here on Main Street in Westminster," Hosfeld Joseph said.
Hosfeld Joseph said that this project was done in the spirit of Stan Ruchlewicz. Ruchlewicz was Westminster's former administrator of economic development and the town's main street manager. He passed away in June unexpectedly.
"This is all due to Stan, he was an amazing advocate for people who owned businesses on Main Street," Hosfeld Joseph said. " This is more than anything a shout out to him and everything he did for all of us here on Main Street."
Hosfeld Joseph said that 500 posters will be printed and made available in time for holiday shopping. They will be on sale at Birdie’s Cafe, The Carroll Arts Center and Gizmo’s.
The posters will be 18 inches wide by 24 inches tall and will cost $20. Hosfeld Joseph said she will contribute a portion of the proceeds from the posters to the city of Westminster facade program.
Hosfeld Joseph encouraged Carroll County residents to remember local Main Streets when making holiday shopping plans.
"These are your friends and neighbors and people in the community who are making this community thrive, and if we don’t support them, it’s not going to be here anymore," Hosfeld Joseph said.