Our design programs benefit the community, property owners, and businesses

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Emporia Main Street's DESIGN programs are run by a committee of volunteers along with Main Street staff. The goal of our design initiatives is to create a vibrant downtown commercial district by enhancing the district's physical and visual assets.

Our design programs work to improve downtown buildings, parking areas, street furniture, signs, sidewalks, street lights, and landscaping. Our design programs also help individual business owners with building design, window display implementation, education, and advice. All design activities are focused on making downtown a welcoming place for residents and visitors, and a place for businesses to thrive.

Additionally, the Design Committee works to preserve the legacy and stories of the Downtown Historic District through a variety of historic preservation activities.

Design Programs


Emporia's downtown gardens are all maintained by volunteers. If you love to garden, ask us how you can adopt one!

Historic Tax Credits

If you own property within Downtown Historic District, you may qualify for tax credits on maintenance, upgrades or redevelopment.

Veterans Banners

We honor our heroes every fall with a downtown display of over 200 light pole banners featuring area veterans.

Beyond the Banners

Beyond the Banners is a keepsake book that was created in response to the overwhelming popularity of our Veterans Banner Project.

Other Design Committe Projects

Historic Preservation
Downtown Clean-ups
Holiday decorating
Beautification projects
Design awards

Want to support a vibrant downtown atmosphere?

Our design programs seek to create a pleasant, welcoming environment downtown, which draws shoppers, residents, and visitors. This ultimately benefits not just downtown, but our community as a whole.

Design Committee Volunteers

Yvonne Pool


Becky Smith
Twin Rivers Winery & City Commissioner

Stacy Hammond
Coffelt Signs

Sally Sanchez
Hispanics of Today and Tomorrow

Aansu Trelc


Interested in joining the Design Committee?

The Design Committee perfect for creative types who are willing to their hands dirty, as well those who are interested in or knowledgable about Emporia's history. Click the button below if you'd like to join!

Design Education

New Shirts!

By Jessica Buchholz | May 14, 2021

Purchase at

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New resources come online to support businesses repairing buildings, or evolving through the pandemic.

By Jessica Buchholz | January 13, 2021

Emporia Main Street is always on the lookout for new funding opportunities to assist local businesses. There are three programs that we are going to highlight in this e-news.The Kansas Rural Preservation Grant- The Kansas Historical Society through the State Office of Historic Preservation (SHIPO) applied for and received funding for a Rural Preservation Grant.…

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Radical Transparency: Your customers, staff, and the general public need to hear from you in a different way RIGHT NOW

By Jessica Buchholz | June 26, 2020

We have many positive traits in the Midwest. The people here work hard, they are punctual, people believe in teamwork, and they typically value getting things done. One of the negative traits we sometimes experience is out ability to deal with knowledge vacuums. When we don’t know something, instead of simply saying “I don’t know”…

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Interactive Mural Encourages Community to Engage in Downtown

By Jessica Buchholz | March 12, 2020

Last week was a fluttering of activity in downtown Emporia! The sun was shining, the weather teased of spring, Trox Gallery and Gifts held their Grand Opening and several Emporians and visitors took a moment to transform themselves in to a butterfly!After several months of planning, working on designs, and discussing with the appropriate channels,…

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Colder Weather Efficiency for your Business

By Casey Woods | October 21, 2019

Don’t let your hard earned money blow out the window We had a beautiful day Saturday, and now the temperature is dropping FAST.  There are some basic things you can do for your business now, that range from super inexpensive, to a little more in depth, that can drop your energy bill in colder months. …

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Earth Day

By Casey Woods | April 26, 2019

Earth Day was Monday of this week, and each year people find ways to gather in parks as they plant trees and talk about recycling to emphasize our commitment to the only habitable planet we know of.  It’s important to take care of our home.  Leaving things better than you found them should be a…

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