OPRD release – SALEM – “Idea to Implementation” is the theme of the 2023 Oregon Main Street Conference that will take place October 4-6 at multiple venues in downtown Independence. The 2023 Oregon Main Street Conference looks at the “big picture” of why main street districts are so incredibly important to the health and well-being of local communities – physically, economically, and socially. The conference theme, Idea to Implementation, reflects the innovation happening in Oregon Main Street organizations to think creatively about the issues and opportunities impacting their communities and then developing concrete programs and activities to bring about meaningful change. The opening keynote will feature Mary Means who is best known for leading the team that created the National Main Street Center. More than 1,600 towns and historic neighborhood corridors in 45 states have successfully used the Main Street Approach™ to bring people back to their historic cores. Mary is the author of Main Street’s Comeback and How It Can Come Back Again, published in 2020. Also featured is Steve Patty, Ph.D. He spent over thirteen years as a professor and administrator in higher education before stepping out of the university context to work with organizations in the nonprofit and public sectors. For the past two decades, he has been developing the capacity of agencies that work with people to design strategy, develop people, and evaluate impact. Staff and volunteers of organizations focusing on downtown historic preservation and economic development, downtown business and property owners, government leaders, chamber of commerce professionals and volunteers, and others with an interest in the future of downtown will benefit from attending this conference. “We are excited to bring together people from across Oregon who share a common passion for helping their historic downtowns thrive,” said Sheri Stuart, state coordinator of the Oregon Main Street Network. “In working with our local partners, the Independence Downtown Association and the City of Independence, we’ve created an opportunity for people to experience a community that is a model of some of the best practices for enhancing their downtown while maintaining its sense of place while learning and networking with each other.” Oregon Main Street is part of Oregon Heritage in Oregon Park and Recreation Department. For more information about the Oregon Main Street Conference, visit www.oregonmainstreet.org or contact Sheri Stuart at firstname.lastname@example.org or 503.986.0679.