News & Updates

Christmas Parade and Holiday Celebration Scheduled for Friday, November 30, 2018

The Jamestown Renaissance Corporation is pleased to announce that the annual Christmas Parade and Holiday Celebration, presented by The Resource Center, will feature pre-parade musical entertainment, a traditional tree lighting ceremony with Mayor Sam Teresi, and a fireworks display above the Spring Street parking ramp. Applications to participate in the parade are now being accepted and are available for download online.

(From Left) Nikki Brunecz, TRC, Steve Waterson, TRC, Heather Brown, TRC, Kristy Kathman, JRC, and Bruce Main, TRC

The Candy Land Christmas Parade and Holiday Celebration will be held on Friday, November 30, beginning at 6:30 pm. This year’s Candy Land theme was decided through a community vote held on Facebook. The parade itself will begin on the Third Street Bridge and continue down Third Street toward City Hall. Parade line up will begin at 5:00 pm on West Third Street between Hallock Street and Porter Avenue (Farm Fresh Plaza).

The downtown Jamestown holiday parade has been a long standing tradition in the city for decades. Dozens of area businesses, social organizations, and nonprofits come downtown the evening of the parade to celebrate the holidays, attend one of many area holiday events, and support local business. One of these nonprofits, The Resource Center, has returned again as presenting sponsor, and JRC is proud to continue its partnership with this great community organization.

Heather Brown, Assistant Executive Director at the Resource Center said, “The Resource Center is proud to sponsor the Christmas Parade in downtown Jamestown again this year.  It is the true spirit of community, which brings us all together to celebrate as well as give back to family and friends throughout the holiday season. The Parade is just one example of an amazing community of partners and we are so pleased to provide our support.”

“The parade is a wonderful tradition, and we are happy to sponsor the parade as a way of giving back to our community and thanking everyone for the support they give to The Resource Center throughout the year,” remarked Steve Waterson, Director of Community Relations, Marketing and Development for The Resource Center.

The Jamestown Renaissance Corporation makes Jamestown better through inspiration, action, and celebration. For more information on Jamestown Renaissance Corporation special events or to sign up for the Candy Land Christmas Parade and Holiday Celebration, please visit www.jamestownrenaissance.org to download the application or email zach@jamestownrenaissance.org.

JRC Appoints Interim Executive Director

Peter Miraglia has been appointed interim executive director of the Jamestown Renaissance Corporation (JRC) following the resignation of Lisa Hatch, effective October 9th. The JRC is a non-profit organization that supports the implementation of downtown, waterfront and neighborhood revitalization strategies in Jamestown.

Peter has been an active member of the JRC board of directors for the past 3 years and serves on the urban core and neighborhood revitalization subcommittees. He also serves on the Mayor’s ad-hoc downtown parking study.

In 2001 Peter purchased and began renovations of the former Nelson’s Department store building located on East 2nd Street in Jamestown. The building currently houses several prominent businesses including Chautauqua Music, Afloral.com and Studio D Catering.

Peter was born in Jamestown and grew up in the local area. He holds a B.S. degree in Criminal Justice from Buffalo State College and completed 30 hours of graduate studies at George Washington University. Peter gained extensive project management and supervisory experience throughout a career that spanned more than 30 years in federal government agencies, including 5 years as an active duty officer in the U.S. Coast Guard.

In 2012, Peter moved back to Jamestown with his wife Melissa. As native of the Jamestown area, Peter is excited to take an active role in the revitalization of his hometown.

At Jamestown Renaissance Corporation we make Jamestown better through inspiration, action, and celebration. For more information about JRC, please visit jamestownrenaissance.org.

Jamestown Public Market to Table Dinner Set for September 17

The Jamestown Public Market announces their annual Market to Table event, set this year for September 17.

Public Market Manager, Linnea Carlson, is excited to work with market farms, vendors and the local fine dining scene to ‘raise the bar’ this year.

“We are collaborating with Chef Brian Kiendl of The White Carrot. Chef Kiendl puts together a spectacular farm to table menu each evening at his beautiful restaurant and we wanted to bring that atmosphere to downtown Jamestown”, says Carlson.

Held at and sponsored by St. Luke’s Episcopal Church, the Market to Table dinner will begin at 6:30 pm with a cocktail hour complete with hors d’oeurves, followed by a four-course meal at 7:30. Each course will be artfully prepared by Chef Kiendl utilizing ingredients supplied by farmers and vendors of the Jamestown Public Market.

The goal of this year’s event is to celebrate local farmers and their products that create a lively market each Saturday. “The White Carrot understands what it truly means to let local ingredients shine. We will be working with our farmers and vendors to supply specifically chosen ingredients needed to create four spectacular dishes.”

The meal will also feature wine pairings selected by The Bag and String Wine Merchants and farm to table cocktail specials created by the White Carrot. A detailed presentation discussing the inspiration behind each dish and farms highlighted will accompany the meal.  

Farmers that will provide product for the dinner include: For Peate’s Sake Homestead, Sunshine Honey, The Biodome Project and Love Your Weeds. Ingredients will include pasture raised proteins, locally grown vegetables and heirloom garlic.

Carlson is thrilled for Jamestown to celebrate a new dining experience. “This is an opportunity for our community to thank the farmers that dedicate their livelihood to our market, and work diligently to bring fresh, local products to our table, while understanding what amazing culinary delights can be created with their products. We are thrilled to partner with a Chef that understands these ingredients, and will create an experience like no other.”

Tickets are priced at $100 per attendee, with all proceeds benefiting the continued programming of the Jamestown Public Market. Sales will begin Tuesday, September 4 at noon. Visit facebook.com/JamestownPublicMarket for more information.

Jamestown Public Market Set for June 9th Opening

Continuing on Saturdays along Cherry street between Second and Third streets in downtown Jamestown, the Public Market will run later in the day this season, open from 10am to 2 pm. A recent recipient of the USDA Farmers Market Promotion Program grant, the public market is once again partnering with Univera Healthcare to sponsor a variety of fun and unique events.

Public Market Manager Linnea Carlson is thrilled to be a part of the market’s ‘renaissance’ season. “We are excited to utilize the funding we were fortunate to receive through the USDA, and our sponsorship partners, to expand our programming and educational opportunities. The past four months have been spent planning an exciting season dedicated to our local community. Our 2018 lineup includes LEGO STEM activities, a community pig roast, local wine and craft brew tastings, a soup contest, and our annual 1k Kids Run. We want the Public Market to be so much more than a retail venue, but rather a celebration of our farmers and a gathering space for community members of all ages and interests. ”

Located along the Pearl City Arts building, the market is proud to highlight local food, wellness, and retail related businesses. “The community has really come together to create an exciting market event each Saturday. Local business owners have been nothing but supportive, and we hope to continue to showcase all that downtown Jamestown has to offer. We need individuals and families to attend each week, shop local and support our community”, said Carlson.

The Jamestown Public Market will feature free live entertainment from local musicians and community groups, along with outdoor seating and prepared food offerings. The market has also partnered with various community organizations to highlight local programs. Organizations that will be offering activities and information throughout the season include the YWCA, the Chautauqua ASPCA, the Audubon Community Nature Center, Roger Tory Peterson Institute, New Directions Youth and Family Services, Chautauqua Alcohol and Substance Abuse Coalition (CASAC) and JamestownNY Rocks.

In addition to community organization spotlights, the 2018 market will also premiere the Jamestown Public Market ‘SPROUTS’ Club, free weekly children’s activities and educational opportunities. Sponsored by Jamestown Pediatric Associates, all children who participate in market activities will receive a $2 voucher that can be spent on fresh fruits and vegetables. Children won’t be the only ones who have the chance to learn while at the market; cooking demonstrations featuring market products will be featured, hosted by passionate ‘foodies’ of the area. Eat Smart NY will also continue to offer community food tastings.

Opening day events include a 10:30 children’s story-time, celebration of ‘World Knitting in Public Day’ in partnership with the Mental Health Association’s Knitting for Wellbeing Group, and live music by Russel & Hamels. A Ribbon Cutting Ceremony will take place at 11 AM to celebrate the market’s USDA funding. Chautauqua County Executive George Borello and Senator Cathy Young plan to be in attendance.

Events and programming scheduled for the 2018 season have been based on community feedback and an effort to expand market offerings. Featured vendors include Abers Acres, Scott’s Farm & Greenhouse, Hidden Valley Produce, Alpacaville, Becki’s Bakery, Eden’s Herbs, The Biodome Project, Gardens of Eternity, and For Peate’s Sake Homestead. The market continues to offer organic produce, locally grown fruits and vegetables, locally raised meat products, artisan goods, homemade baked goods, local honey, handmade soap products and much more.  

The Jamestown Public Market accepts EBT, credit and debit. More information on nutrition benefits can be found at the Market information tent. For those interested in vending, contact Carlson at 716-489-3497 or email linnea@jamestownrenaissance.org. For additional information on all market events visit jamestownrenaissance.org or the Jamestown Public Market Facebook page.

Recognition of Jamestown’s Gardens Set for July

JAMESTOWN, NY, May, 2018 —Jamestown’s front yard gardens have been filling neighborhoods with eye-catching textures and colors. To acknowledge the value that these gardens and their caretakers add to the city, the Jamestown Renaissance Corporation (JRC) is continuing the GROW Jamestown Front Yard Garden Recognition Program for an eighth straight year. 

“The GROW Jamestown Front Yard Garden Recognition Program is a way to acknowledge home gardeners who contribute to the curb appeal of Jamestown’s neighborhoods—and to encourage all residents to take part in making Jamestown a more beautiful place. This program was created to encourage pride and acknowledge the efforts made by many of the residents of Jamestown. It is not set up as a competition.” said Mary Maxwell, Neighborhood Project Associate at the JRC.

This year the survey will return to the summer gardens of Jamestown with an all-time maximum number of signs to disperse – 780! 

The 12,000 front yards of Jamestown have been divided into 37 sections, with each section containing approximately 325 front yards. 37 volunteer teams will form to complete the garden survey. Each team will be assigned to cover one section of the city, and is comprised of a navigator (the driver), a photographer (to take a photo of the property), and a data entry person to document the process (a list of where the signs were placed).

Between Monday, July 9th and Monday, July 30th, each team will survey their section of the city, determine the “norm” for that section, and then decide which front yard gardens they wish to acknowledge and encourage by bestowing a 2018 yard sign.

“Attractive gardens take time and effort, but they add tremendously to the appearance of homes and entire neighborhoods,” said Maxwell, noting that the program stems from recommendations in the city’s neighborhood revitalization plan. “It’s a signal that people care about their homes and neighborhoods, and it sends a powerful message to neighbors and visitors,” said Maxwell.

The program is a part of GROW Jamestown, a city-wide initiative that promotes gardening as a tool for neighborhood revitalization, healthy living, civic engagement, and the productive reuse of vacant land. Other GROW Jamestown projects include community gardens, an annual Garden Fair and Home Show in the spring, and the Great June Seedling Giveaway.

“This year’s program is possible because of over 100 volunteers who will canvass our city to find gardens they wish to recognize. Their interest in devoting time to this project shows the level of enthusiasm that people have for gardening and celebrating Jamestown’s beauty,” said Maxwell. “This project is the Jamestown Renaissance Corporation’s way to say thank you for the color, character and beauty the residents bring to our wonderful city.”  A big thanks also goes out to the volunteers of the Retired Senior Volunteer Program (RSVP) for helping to collate and organize the informational materials. 

At Jamestown Renaissance Corporation we make Jamestown better through inspiration, action, and celebration. For more information on GROW Jamestown and the garden recognition program, visit the JRC website at www.jamestownrenaissance.org. To sign up as a volunteer, contact Mary Maxwell at 489-3493 or e mail mary@jamestownrenaissance.org.

JRC Adds New Public Market Manager

The Jamestown Renaissance Corporation is proud to announce the hiring of Linnea Carlson as their new Jamestown Public Market Manager.

“We are so excited to add Linnea to our team. She brings a fresh perspective and a lot of great new ideas that will take the Jamestown Public Market to the next level,” said Lisa Hatch, Executive Director at JRC.

Linnea, a native of Frewsburg, has always enjoyed all that Chautauqua County and Jamestown in particular have to offer. She obtained a Master’s Degree in Clinical Social Work from Fordham University, a Bachelor’s Degree in Social Work from SUNY Fredonia, and started her education with an Associate’s Degree in Human Services at Jamestown Community College.

Linnea currently resides in Frewsburg with her boyfriend, Ben, and their three cats. They love to try new restaurants and explore all that Jamestown has to offer. In her spare time, she volunteers as a Girl Scout troop leader, and enjoys cooking using locally sourced ingredients.

Linnea was most recently the Creating Healthy Communities Coordinator at Chautauqua County Health Network where she worked on promoting healthy retail and healthy worksite development. She has also spent the last two years volunteering at the Fredonia Farmers’ Market, where she improved their social media presence, worked on outreach to attract SNAP recipients, and conducted cooking demonstrations and videos.

Her background and training will allow Linnea to enhance the Jamestown Public Market, with plans to have more cooking demonstrations, children’s activities, new market events, and fresh entertainment. Linnea is also looking to grow support for local agriculture and encourage community interaction with local farmers.

“I love that Jamestown has so much that a larger city can offer, but still maintains that small community feel,” said Linnea. “My biggest goal for the Market is to transform it into a community destination that will make people wake up on Saturdays and know that the Jamestown Public Market is the place to be!” The market will run every Saturday from June through October, 10 am to 2 pm.

In addition to the Jamestown Public Market, Linnea will also manage a new Mobile Market that will bring fresh produce to three locations within Jamestown. This program will allow individuals who are not in close proximity to a grocery store the opportunity to purchase locally grown foods. The Mobile Market will kick off this summer – details will be announced as they become available.

At Jamestown Renaissance Corporation we make Jamestown better through inspiration, action, and celebration. For more information on the Jamestown Public Market, check it out on Facebook at facebook.com/jamestownpublicmarket, Instagram at instagram.com/jamestownpublicmarket or call Linnea at 716-489-3497.

2018 Renaissance Block Challenge Pre-Application available now

The 2018 Renaissance Block Challenge pre-application is available now and is due by Friday, December 8, 2017. There will be two informational workshops at the Jamestown Renaissance Corporation located at 301 E Second Street, Suite 301. Each workshop will start at 6 pm on October 10th and 12th. These workshops are not mandatory, but are highly encouraged.

2018-Pre-Application-Instructions

2018-Pre-Application

The timeline moving forward is as follows:

Monday, October 2, 20172018 Pre-application Available
Tuesday, October 10, 20172018 RBC application workshop
Thursday, October 12, 20172018 RBC application workshop
Friday, December 8, 2017Complete pre-application due
January 2018Invitation to final application
Friday, March 9, 2018Final applications due
Friday, March 23, 2018Finalist announced

For more information regarding the Renaissance Block Challenge please visit: Renaissance Block Challenge

Market To Table Dinner Features Local Foods

This article appeared in The Post-Journal on September 15, 2017. Author: Katrina Fuller; Click here for original article

With twinkling lights, soft jazz and local foods, the Jamestown Public Market hosted a harvest-themed feast like none other.

Long tables lined the Winter Garden Plaza, adorned with flowers, candles and plates of cheese, fruit, entrees and salads chock full of local goods. Christina Breen, Farmers Market manager, said the event is a favorite of hers that brings the community together in a unique way.

“This is the second year,” Breen said. “It was smashing – it was a beautiful fall day, just like today. We’re so thankful we’re getting good weather for these events because we really wanted to activate the Winter Garden space.”

She said the idea is to raise funds for the public market all while showing the public what a special event would look like held in the unique Winter Garden Plaza. Studio D catered the event using local produce, meats and cheeses. The dinner also included local wines and beers as well as coffee from the Crown Street Roasting Company and dessert from Full Moon Rising Bakery.

Breen said the market tries to keep the foods as local as possible. Likewise, they aim to showcase items that can be bought at the market.

“The dishes they are creating today are used from local farms and local vendors,” she said.

We also wanted to make it a family style dinner, so all of the tables are connected so everyone is sitting together and getting to know their neighbors.”

Breen said it is exciting to take businesses and entities from across the county and put them together to see what comes of it.

“You have this beautiful event that’s happening tonight, and it’s kind of the culmination of all of that,” she said.

Breen said it is the perfect event to end on as she takes her leave of the market.

“It’s kind of emotional for me because I’m leaving and all these people have been such a huge, important part of the Farmer’s Market in just supporting it,” she said.

Kristy Kathman, Jamestown Renaissance Corporation program and administrative coordinator, and Sarah Gilbert, Jamestown Renaissance Corporation grant writer, thanked everyone in the crowd for attending and supporting the public market.

“This a really special night for us, and we love having you here with us,” Gilbert said.

Kathman and Gilbert then recognized Breen as the “guest of honor for the evening.

“When I first began working at the JRC, Christina was just returning from maternity leave and gearing up for the new market season, and we quickly bonded over motherhood and the challenges of going to work when all you really want to do is be home, snuggling your baby,” Kathman said. “As Christina and I got to know each other, Christina’s passion really began to come through. She is a highly passionate woman. While I’d say she’s most passionate about her son, Jack, her husband, Jeff and her family, one conversation with Christina shows how passionate she is about so many things.”

During the five years Breen spent with the market, Kathman said she has been an advocate for farmers and making fresh, healthy foods available for everyone. Breen also fought for the market to continue, even when the funding situation was precarious. Recently, she worked with Gilbert to write a grant to the USDA to expand the reach of the market.

“Christina strives to give a voice to those who may not be heard otherwise,” Kathman said. “I think that’s awesome.”

The JRC will be hard-pressed to find someone as dedicated and passionate as Breen, she said, wishing Breen the best in the next chapter of her life.

“On a personal note, I’ll miss our conversations on life and just how great Jamestown is and how great it can be,” Kathman said. “I’ll miss your smile around the office and your big heart.”

The Public Market will be open until October and is located on Cherry Street between Third and Second Streets in downtown Jamestown. It is open on Saturdays from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. For more information, visit www. jamestownrenaissance.org.

2018 Renaissance Block Challenge Applications Available Soon

452 Front Street – part of the 2017 RBC Front Street East neighborhood cluster

Since 2011, 35 neighborhoods have participated in the Jamestown Renaissance Corporation’s Renaissance Block Challenge (RBC) with almost 350 property owners investing more than $975,000 in exterior improvements and repairs. The RBC program, which assists neighborhood homeowners with exterior home improvements, is continuing for the seventh year.

Pre-applications for neighborhoods interested in participating in the 2018 Renaissance Block Challenge (RBC) program will be available on the JRC’s website jamestownrenaissance.org, under ”Healthy Neighborhoods” starting Monday, October 2nd. The pre-applications will be due Friday, December 8th.

City residents who would like to participate in the Renaissance Block Challenge need to form a neighborhood cluster with a minimum of five property owners that can include homeowners, landlords and businesses. Once a group has formed, the pre-application process can start.

In the neighborhood applications, participants outline exterior improvements they wish to complete and skills they can bring to projects in their cluster. Projects funded in the program include painting; porch repair; soffit repair; sidewalk repair; mailboxes; exterior lighting; front-yard landscaping; front doors/windows; driveways; driveway aprons; and gutters.

Important dates for the 2018 Renaissance Block Challenge:

Monday, October 2, 20172018 Pre-application Available
Tuesday, October 10, 20172018 RBC application workshop
Thursday, October 12, 20172018 RBC application workshop
Friday, December 8, 2017Complete pre-application due
January 2018Invitation to final application
Friday, March 9, 2018Final applications due
Friday, March 23, 2018Finalist announced

For 2018, each property owner is eligible for a match up to $2,000 to facilitate their projects. Aside from matching grant funding, participating homeowners have access to discounts from sponsoring hardware stores and garden centers as well as discounts on coordinated purchasing of materials, services and design.

Funding for the Renaissance Block Challenge program is being provided by the John Alfred and Oscar Johnson Memorial Trust, with support from the Chautauqua Region Community Foundation , The Ralph C. Sheldon Foundation, and The Lenna Foundation. In Addition, the following businesses are some of those providing special discounts and services to Renaissance Block Challenge participants: B & L Wholesale Supply, Brigiotta’s Greenhouse & Garden Center, Chautauqua Brick, Craig’s Landscaping, Everydays True Value, Kingsview Paving and Excavating, LaBella Associates, LaMar Seamless Gutters, Mike’s Nursery and Tactical Tree Services.

“While the Renaissance Block Challenge financially assists homeowners with curb appeal improvements to their properties, the real benefit is an increase in pride of ownership within each of these neighborhoods”, says Mary Maxwell, JRC’s Neighborhood Project Associate. “And on top of that, and more importantly, there is an increase in communication among the neighbors.” Block parties, neighborhood sales and group participation in volunteer activities become annual events.

A few neighborhoods have participated in the program more than once. Neighborhoods that want to participate again must have at least 60 percent of the homeowners be first-time participants to be approved.

The neighborhoods with the best chance of being approved for the program are those that can demonstrate a commitment to cultivating strong communication between neighbors and a shared sense of identity so that momentum gained in 2018 can be carried forward and result in a sustainable impact on the community.

“When you buy a home, you buy a neighborhood,” says Claire Tomassini. “Our priorities are to maintain this neighborhood for ourselves, our families and our children, who are the future of this city.”

Learn more about the Renaissance Block Cluster pre-application process by attending an informational workshop on Tuesday, October 10, or Thursday, October 12, 2017, at 6 p.m. at the at the JRC offices, 301 East 2nd Street, Suite 301. Reservations are requested. Call Mary Maxwell at 489-3493 or email mary@jamestownrenaissance.org for questions regarding the Renaissance Block Challenge or to reserve your space for a workshop.

The Jamestown Renaissance Corporation is a nonprofit organization that supports downtown and neighborhood revitalization in Jamestown by promoting reinvestment, stakeholder engagement and innovation.

Neighborhood Revitalization Progress Report

Jamestown Renaissance Corporation recently had a report prepared by czb LLC entitled “Housing Market Analysis and Neighborhood Revitalization Strategy.” This report was made possible by the generosity of both the Chautauqua Region Community Foundation and the Ralph C. Sheldon Foundation.

The Report analyzes Jamestown’s current housing market, and assesses the impact of the Renaissance Block Challenge to this point. The report makes recommendations to further improve the Renaissance Block Challenge by focusing on four key areas. These key areas can be seen on the map below. The full report is also available through this link:

Housing Market Analysis and Neighborhood Revitalization Strategy Review

The Presentation version is available via this link:

Housing Market Analysis Presentation

4 Focus Areas

The Four Focus Areas of the Housing Market Analysis and Neighborhood Revitalization Strategy Review