BATESVILLE – January 20, 2017 – Karen and Jeff Bailey are maximizing a $5,000 grant they received through the Citizens Bank Impact Loan and Grant Program to revitalize the retail space they own in downtown Batesville.
In fact, the Baileys appear to be “doubling down” on their investment – and there’s more to come. Their primary business, Main Street Pottery, occupies the back portion of the building at 309 East Main Street, and has now been joined by the relocation of Denim Blues, a clothing store that recently opened in the front of the “L”-shaped structure.
“The Impact Grant we received from Citizens Bank is helping tremendously to refurbish our Main Street entrance to make our space more inviting for customers,” said Karen Bailey. “Our improvements will give the property a fresh, clean appearance that is more in keeping with the character of the 1930s period when the original store opened.”
The grant funds have been helping pay for the installation of a new awning, repair a transom window above the door, replace cracked and missing tilework at the entrance, and provide new lighting for two traditional display windows.
Citizens Bank offered $10 million in low-interest rate loans and $100,000 in grant funds to stimulate the downtown Batesville economy and promote historic downtown redevelopment. The Batesville Downtown Foundation evaluated the grant applications.
“When we purchased the building, we decided to totally restore and repair the storefront to create a viable business,” Karen Bailey said. “The grant is helping give the storefront a complete facelift so, as shoppers walk down Main Street, they will want to take the time to come in.”
Drew and Atoshia Willmuth recently signed a lease with the Baileys to relocate Denim Blues, which has moved its merchandise from the previous location on Harrison Street in Batesville.
“Denim Blues is a great addition to Main Street,” Ms. Bailey said. “It is a wonderful complement for us in the new space we share in downtown Batesville.”
In addition to all those improvements, the Baileys also are applying for additional grant funds to acquire and refurbish yet another store that is situated on the other side of the Main Street “pocket park” in downtown Batesville.
Main Street Pottery, which has a separate entrance off Third Street, will soon begin offering pottery classes and parties for the local community.
Ms. Bailey operates the space as a studio and now as a showroom for custom pottery, such as the personalized pieces she produces for various military units. She also designs custom pottery for companies and schools, displaying logos or symbols pressed into the clay and glazed to showcase the business name or mascot.
Main Street Pottery can be contacted at 844-231-8050.
Denim Blues’ operating hours are 10:00 a.m. to 6:00 p.m. Monday through Saturday. The phone number is 870-569-4917.
Additional information about the Citizens Bank Impact Loans and Grants program is available by contacting either Jerrod Sandefur for commercial loans (870-698-6313) or Renee Long for consumer loans (870-698-9678).