Independent We Stand has recognize Sykesville Main Street in Sykesville, Md. as the $25,000 winner of the 2020 “America’s Main Streets” contest. A record-setting 1.5 million total votes were cast by the public nationwide in the fifth annual contest—a 52 percent increase in voting over last year.
The COVID-19 pandemic drove voters to support small businesses that would benefit from winning the contest. Sykesville garnered unprecedented votes and its nonprofit Downtown Sykesville Connection (DSC) now plans to dedicate prize winnings to the DSC’s nonprofit activities and programs for the sustainability of its 44 downtown small businesses.
“Winning this contest is about more than just adding another accolade to our already wonderful list of accomplishments as a Main Street program. It allows us to provide even more support to our local business community in a time of dire need,” explains Julie Della-Maria, executive director of Downtown Sykesville Connection. “Along with an existing microgrant program with the Town of Sykesville, we plan to use our cash prize to help our members get through the coronavirus crisis.”
“The hands-on approach the DSC is planning to support its small businesses and, in turn, its community during the COVID-19 crisis is a testament to the importance and impact America’s Main Streets can have,” says Bill Brunelle, co-founder of Independent We Stand. “A strong Main Street has a direct impact on the success and survival of independent businesses. Downtown Sykesville Connection is doing all the right things.”
As part of its ongoing mission to promote small businesses, Independent We Stand created the “America’s Main Streets” contest to promote the important role main streets play in building economic success for their communities.
STIHL Inc. is the founding sponsor of Independent We Stand and the presenting sponsor of “America’s Main Streets” contest. Supporting sponsors include Do it Best Corp., Flip This Town, Nationwide Marketing Group, NRHA, Paint & Decorating Retailers Association and PPG Paints.