King Street nominated for favorite main street in NC

By Jesse Campbell (jesse.campbell@mountaintimes.com)



Article Published: Apr. 17 | Modified: Apr. 17

North Carolina is learning what Watauga County residents have long suspected: There is something special about King Street and downtown Boone.

Through an online poll, North Carolina voters have selected their favorite Main Streets and Public Places statewide for the state chapter of the American Planning Association.

King Street in Boone has officially made it on the list of finalists.

These places were nominated by the public through the “’People’s Choice” campaign that was launched last month. A panel of nine expert judges has narrowed that list down and is now turning the voting over to North Carolina residents, according to a news release.

Voters can cast their choices by visiting http://www.greatplacesnc.org. Once there, voters will find information on how to vote for the “People’s Choice” in North Carolina.

Boone is currently in competition with main streets in Morganton, Mooresville, Benson and Charlotte.
On receiving news of the town’s nomination, Boone Mayor Andy Ball said it “speaks highly of what the town has done to maintain the downtown area” and how the various and distinct elements of the town have come together and worked collaboratively in promoting Boone’s numerous sights and sounds.

“There is a certain historical element and local small business element we are trying to support in the downtown,” Ball said. “This goes a long way to promoting all the work we have done and what the small businesses have done.”

Ball said the town was notified of its inclusion on the list Monday afternoon.

He added the surrounding community and eclectic mixture of arts, music and entertainment makes Boone stand apart from its Tar Heel counterparts.

“We are a melting pot of different families and areas,” Ball said. “The downtown certainly has an arts and music vibe to it, along with the ASU campus and Appalachian family. It’s really both areas coming together on King Street and making for such a vibrant mix. We bring a variety of culture and local interests and a variety of age groups.”

Boone is not the only mountain town in Western North Carolina to receive love from the People’s Choice awards.

Burnsville and Sylva are also finalists for the “Great Public Places” category, along with Tarboro, Manteo, Charlotte, Raleigh and Jamestown.

In the future, the APA plans to sponsor a “Great Main Street in the Making” award for main streets still being planned or only partly on the ground with potential for economic development and vitality, according to the release.

For more information, or to vote, visit http://www.greatplacesnc.org.

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