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2016 VCEN Annual Conference

Downtown Inc. - The Business of Historic District Revitalization
June 29, 2016 
The Ward Center for Contemporary Art
Petersburg, VA

The Virginia Community Economic Network teamed up with the Virginia Downtown Development Association to explore how communities can leverage redevelopment in historic commercial districts to nurture entrepreneurship and build creative economies. Showcasing the exciting developments happening in Petersburg, this event featured interactive conversations illustrating how collaborative efforts between developers, entrepreneurs, government officials and engaged citizens can renew community vitality and economic prosperity. Taking a deep-dive into the revitalization efforts afoot in one of Virginia’s historic cities, this collaborative convening examined a variety of interconnected strategies and tactics that offer useful lessons-learned about longer-term support infrastructures that can drive prosperity for people and places across the Commonwealth.


11:30am - Sign in & Networking

12:00pm-12:30pm – Lunch

12:30pm-12:45pm – Opening Remarks

Costa Canavos, Berkadia and Virginia Downtown Development Association
Conaway Haskins, VT KnowledgeWorks and Virginia Community Economic Network

12:45pm – Startup Downtown: Creating Vibrant Community Economies through Entrepreneurship
Danielle Fitz-Hugh, Petersburg Chamber of Commerce
Donnie Cornwell, Local Vibe Cafe
Andrea L. Huntjens, Sophisticated Soirees
Paul Meyer, Virginia Vegetable Co.

1:45pm – Old Towns, New Energy: Public Sector Engagement in Commercial Corridor Redevelopment
Jeff Sadler, Virginia Department of Housing and Community Development
Pat Hood, Crater Small Business Development Center
Terry Ammons, Studio Ammons & Ammo Brewing

2:45pm – The Making of Place: Cultural Arts as a Revitalization Strategy
Isaac Ward, Ward Center for Contemporary Art
Noelle Ward, Ward Center for Contemporary Art
Costa Canavos, Berkadia

4:00pm – Exploring the Ward Center, Butterworth Flats and Old Towne Petersburg

5:00pm - Virginia Community Capital 10-Year Anniversary Event at Trapezium Brewery, 423 Third Street, Petersburg, VA 23803