On April 12th, Paul Shea, executive director for Nashua’s Great American Downtown, addressed the Rotary Club of Nashua regarding Nashua’s Great American Downtown efforts. He promotes economic sustainability of downtown Nashua working with the economic development committee and chamber of commerce.   During the pandemic, he expanded his efforts to facilitate support of downtown’s economy through the CARES act and United way helping businesses get PPE and grant money.  Great American Downtown is a conduit for businesses to support each other as well.
He notes that Nashua did an exceptional job adapting to pandemic challenges. 
 
He showed a video about all the wonderful events that have revitalized downtown Nashua and will keep it vital.  Some of these events include a dance party, dinner on Main St., downtown scarecrows, and Painted Pianos on Main St.  The riverfront promenade is a new area of focus. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=x0Dpv2kS7EU  
 
A development many Rotarians found very exciting and interesting is the advent of an app called “Distrix”.  https://distrx.com/.  A beacon sits in a perimeter and triggers certain things to happen on a smartphone.  The app sends push notifications that are activities like a scavenger hunt or self-guided public art tours.  There was a soft launch Fall of 2020 and last week they launched Spanish version. 
 
The app has a lot of potential, but thus far it directs participants to the sculptures from our symposium and the many works of Positive Street Art.  They are also working on a history tour.  Promotional efforts require artists, volunteers and city workers who are working together to make our downtown the special place that it is. 
 
The Alec’s shoe store location is under construction for the new Performing Arts Center.   He shared a time lapse video of the demolition.  The Mason building and Chase building at the corner of Pearl St are also being renovated. The PAC opens mid to late 2022.  
 
Presentation followed by Q and A
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