I love this photo of me and my husband, Lee. It was taken last year at a workshop at Gallery One. I appreciate art, and I’m certainly not an artistic person, but this class came with no experience necessary (perfect!) and Lee and I had a blast. The opportunities in downtown to share, create and experience life in an environment that embraces and enlightens are just some of what I appreciate about downtown Ellensburg.
I’ve been here for 6 ½ years now as Director of the Ellensburg Downtown Association. I’m supposed to use the words Executive Director, but I tend to be a pretty casual person that struggles with titles. This has been the most incredible 6 years, full of change for downtown and adventures in my life. Lee, our dog Dakota, and I have embraced all things Kittitas County, loving outdoor recreation in the form of hiking, backpacking, and biking. We even joined Search and Rescue last year and Dakota and I are avid Ridge hikers. A few times a week I also enjoy evening spin classes and group rides with the Recycle Shop. Ellensburg is an amazing gem that I want everyone to know about, but at the same time, I want to secretly keep it all to myself.
Since coming to Ellensburg, the downtown has grown. Downtown has almost zero vacancies in the first-floor storefronts and we’ve seen new living spaces created both in the upper floors and in new apartment buildings. My favorite projects include the Geddis Building, Hoedown and Buskers in the Burg, teaching NxLeveL Entrepreneur classes, and all of the new street furniture. Helping downtown put its best foot forward is our mission and hearing that the economy is growing for merchants is music to my ears.
Living in Ellensburg and the PNW has been a perfect fit, although I do sometimes miss swimming in the ocean on Cape Cod where I grew up (go Red Sox!). Lee and I have lived in Charlotte, NC; Troy, NY; and Story City, IA, but knew we had reached our final destination when we arrived here. While we do embrace the outdoor recreation, my work here at the EDA has been the most fulfilling part of this journey.
Mostly I love the people I work with, like Molly and Faith, merchants, board members, and employees of the Chamber or City. This town has a great group of diverse individuals who all seem to love being in Ellensburg. Really, who can blame them? Ellensburg is something special.
I’m excited about this new blog because it will give our staff and volunteers a new way to communicate our love for downtown in a different way. I’ll continue to work for downtown, and you continue to enjoy it. Carry on.