Banners, Flower Baskets, and Holiday Lights
Design is an important part of Main Street. The banners, flowers and holiday lights create a welcoming feel to visitors and community members alike. These programs are funded through the generous donations of individuals, organizations, and businesses in Owatonna.
In 2022, we used a grant from MN Main Street for new baskets for our flowers and in 2023 we are using a grant to put towards new banners.
And speaking of banners, we received 10 metal banners from a company in Minnesota, Display Sales. These metal banners were given to the Owatonna Main Street Program at no cost. Display Sales is a company based out of Bloomington, MN that has been making traditional banners since 1966. They wanted to expand their selection and decided metal banners were the best way to do that. After spending quite a while in the development and creative process, they were ready to have a community be a trial location. At the National Main Street Convention in Boston back in March, the Sales & Marketing Director, Ryan C. reached out to our (MN) Main Street Director, Ryan B. and inquired if he knew of a city that was looking at purchasing new banners. Ryan B. knew Owatonna was looking at new banners since we had applied for a grant from MN Main Street for the purchase of new banners for this year. Ryan C. contacted Owatonna Main Street, along with our representative Lori, began to work on the different designs we wanted.
The company really did their research since the banners that we received are almost all from their original plan. They suggested: Huskies, The Art Center, The Orphanage Museum, The History Center, Wells Fargo Bank, Morehouse Dam, The Power Plant, and the state of MN with a star where Owatonna is located. We suggested the Central Park Fountain and somehow highlighting our parks and trails. We went back and forth just a few times to finalize the plans and once the designs were approved, they were ready for production. The company was on a timeline to get the banners hung in early fall. A couple of reasons for that: 1) They did not want to be hanging banners in the cold, winter weather, 2) they planned on taking pictures to use in marketing for their new product. So, Owatonna will get some free publicity. Ryan C mentioned that we may be contacted to possibly do some videos as well – talking about the installation process, the feedback from the community, the durability, etc.
So, we received – 10 free banners (retailing at around $500 a piece), all the hardware needed to install, installation supervision, and numerous marketing opportunities that will mention Owatonna anytime they mention the metal banners. All these reasons made good sense, which is why Main Street accepted the offer. We thought about placing them along Cedar Ave, but there are already brackets on those light poles for other types of banners. Then we realized that if we placed them around Central Park, there are 10 light poles, so just the right number and 3 of the 4 sides of the park are one-way streets, so the banners can be read from the correct direction since they are not “correct” from both sides. So, everything just seemed to fall into place. Check them out when you’re in Central Park!