Dowtown Vineland: Whirlwind Week


swansonDowntown Vineland

By Russell Swanson, Exec. Director, VDID / Main Street Vineland

A Columnist for the Grapevine Newspaper

As I write this, we just finished a week that was a real whirlwind of activity, but it really felt good! We began on Monday, April 25, with a pizza party for the Police Athletic League’s Girls In Action to show appreciation for all they do to help during Clean-Up and Planting Days. They’ve been truly dedicated volunteers and we wanted to give them a relaxed evening of fun and camaraderie. It took place at the PAL building and Mayor Bermudez was on hand to give each in the group a certificate.
Meanwhile, we were putting the finishing touches on preparations to host Main Street representatives and community leaders from throughout the state for Main Street New Jersey’s Design Institute. It was an opportunity for us to roll out the welcome mat and show what we’ve been doing. Grant Plaza was filled that day with over 150 people—representatives from Main Streets, Economic Development leaders, and others. The speaker, Roger Brooks, is a world-renowned expert on destination creation and his presentation was phenomenal. We left with our heads full of ideas to take back and adapt to our communities. Some of these ideas are initiatives that we’ve been working on, while others will be discussed in our teams—as they were in our Economic Restructuring Team meeting the next day. No doubt, you’ll be as excited as we’ll be, as you see progress on these plans. Despite cloudy, damp weather, it was a great day for our downtown.
This past Friday was Arbor Day and we joined forces with the City’s Environmental Commission to plant some trees at Eighth and Elmer streets. Thanks go to all who made this possible.
We don’t have much time to rest, however, as this week brings Dine on Landis, which began this past Monday and runs through May 15. Over a dozen downtown restaurants are offering great specials and you can win an opportunity for a $50 gift certificate usable at any of the participating restaurants is being offered through New Jersey Heartland. The gift certificate may be found at See last week’s issue or Main Street Vineland’s Facebook page for more details about the participating restaurants.
Tuesday began our partnership with the Latin American Economic Development Association, Inc. (LAEDA) and The SCORE Association small business counselors, in bringing to Vineland the Entrepreneurial Development Training Program (EDTP) Quick Start Series. This will be the first of five consecutive Tuesday seminars.
Stay tuned for more information on upcoming events, including Fourth Fridays, cash assaults, Downtown Merchants Meet-and-Greets, and much more.
For more information on Main Street Vineland, call 856-794-8653, visit or check them out on Facebook. You can also e-mail