Secor looks great. Now, let’s reconnect!
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Update4: Download a map and schedule of events for the party.
Secor Road travelers have been in gridlock during one part of the day or another for close to six months. Many used different routes to avoid the area altogether. And that’s when businesses began to suffer. Instead of shopping or eating at their favorite places, many Toledoans just found another place to spend their money.
Sales were in decline even back in March and April for many Secor Road businesses. Twenty to 30 percent decline in sales was common for the 161 retailers on Secor. Business reporter Jon Chavez reported the losses in his April news story,“Secor Road project drilling away at local stores’ profits.” Jon interviewed one retail executive who said, “We are down over previous years’ sales by six digits and climbing.” Employees’ hours at the businesses have been reduced significantly during the construction siege. The City Of Toledo decided to do something about it when the road work ended.
A Road opening party
The Blade’s Bonnie Hunter did not know when she answered her phone that her life would change. A City of Toledo official called Bonnie for help with a “project.” But it didn’t take long for Bonnie to realize this was going to be a huge undertaking. The idea was to have a Secor Road opening party in order for businesses to reconnect with their customers – in a big way.
Bonnie went right to The Blade’s Director of Sales, Mike Mori to bring up the subject. Bonnie knew that Mike has had years of experience with organizing events. When Mike agreed to go forward with the idea, Bonnie was not surprised. But she was impressed with the commitment she would have to make. Jim Williams:, Retail Sales Manager, joined the team very early and they were off. The Blade’s marketing, retail advertising sales, circulation and others met and teamed up to find a way to assist local retailers and The City of Toledo to bring the customers back to their favorite Secor Road establishment.
The event has a name:’The Blade’s Secor Road Opening Party, Sponsored By Sears’
The original plan was to have a reopening party on Secor Road, extending from Sylvania Avenue to Central Avenue. That was modified by extending the coverage to Dorr Street. Every business had economic consequences from the months of construction from Alexis Road to Dorr Street. And that is where it settled. All businesses on Secor from Alexis Road to Dorr Street are being asked to participate. The date for the party was set for October 19, 2013.
Would you and/or your employees help?
The first meeting with Secor Road business people in early September found eight business people in attendance. The very next week brought 30 business owners and leaders together. Even more are expected to attend the next meeting.
There will be some exciting events that include resources from businesses the size of the University of Toledo to family-owned shops.
161 businesses are eligible to participate. Events and contests for your customers and prospects should exceed any other venue in the area. Let’s talk details! How about some discussion here, using this blog? Make comments and put forth your ideas, below.
Join us on Twitter at #secorparty
UPDATE: The Secor Open Road Party progresses with food, prizes, haunted house
Jim WIlliams, The Blade’s Retail Manager, reports that the number of participating businesses is rising. However, he says that “We have a lot more to do.” And it is looking like we are going to have an event that will help us bring back our regular customers and, perhaps, interest many more. For example***
Rides for children and adults are now planned.
- We are pleased to announce Sears Westgate as the Presenting Sponsor for this event! Sears Westgate is also offering one $1,000 gift card for the event drawing
- Home Depot is offering two $1,000 gift cards for the drawing
- Westgate Shopping Center is providing a flat screen TV as a drawing prize.
- Eye Glass World is providing the drawing with two $150 gift cards
- There will be a food court from local vendors
- Ballas Buick GMC is sponsoring a non-profit village. The Red Cross and Imagination Station are among those pitching in.
- Educational entertainment for kids from The City of Toledo, including a fire truck
- A haunted house will be featured
- The Toledo Zoo will have a replica of one of its animals
- Geddis Paving and Excavating is showcasing the high tech construction equipment
- University of Toledo will have buses from and to U.T. for the Navy game and tailgate party.
- TLC is providing shuttles for transport around the party
- The Lucas County Library will participate with one of its mobile assets.
Great meeting today with Secor Road business leaders
**The event’s official name is now The Blade’s Secor Open Road Party, Sponsored by Sears.
Russ’ Car wash will be furnishing exterior express wash coupons as prizes for the Secor Open Road Facebook page.
Mike Mori helped us visualize the layout by drawing the location of rides, games, contests and much more.
Rides? Did someone say rides?
Meet The Rocket
September, 26, 2013
Stella, from Geddis Paving and Excavating, Inc described a seventy-five foot, high-tech vehicle display, and a huge dump truck that will blow the minds of all the little “Bob The Builder” fans out there. I know my grandkids will just be delighted with that!
James Ferguson, The Toledo Fire Department’s Education Officer, described a ladder truck with the ladder deployed high in the sky. The Toledo Fire Department will also include a fire engine and a rescue squad vehicle for their display.
Mike Mori, The Blade’s Director of Sales, listed some of the bands that would be playing. He also said that he would hire a band that Millennials might like will be added. Of course, the Millennial generation has varied tastes in genres. He would like the additional band to attract U.T. students and others in the age group.
It was also mentioned that the physical size of the event may require some impinging upon the Sears parking lot. We were informed by a representative of Westgate Village that Sears understood and agreed to some use of their parking lot.
More details regarding the food court and manning the beer garden were discussed. The conclusion with both of those is that participating business people would volunteer to check ID’s and generally provide security.
There are more details that were discussed after the meeting. I will learn what those details are and post them here, and/or the Facebook Group Page.
***Please note that the event planning is in progress and more information will be added as they are reported.
Join us on Twitter at #secorparty