Posts tagged ‘downtown’

It’s Going to Be Legen-(wait for it)-dary

The iconic State Theatre in downtown South Bend is being rejuvenated. And the entire community will benefit. Why? Because the owner wants this to be a space for the community. Andrew Elegante, the theatre manager, has stated that every event “will have a community organization partner that receives a portion of the proceeds.” The State is also doing something quite different by forming a B Corp–which has been explained to be a new type of for-profit/non-profit corporation–which will lease space in the building as the concessionaire. As a B Corp, it will “meet rigorous standards of social and environmental performance, accountability, and transparency.”  With the formation of this new B Corp comes an interesting crowdfunding opportunity: Fund the State (you can link to this and check it out, perhaps even support the cause, by clicking here).

Why support The State? What’s in it for you? Besides the opportunity to rebuild a city icon and help rejuvenate the downtown area, you could get your name in lights. Well, more specifically, you could boast to your friends how you helped light up The State or you could get your name placed on a chair or a couch. But most importantly, you will know that you were a part of the catalyst to provide a great new venue for our community. Be the change? Yes!

If you are still hesitant to contribute a buck or twenty, let me reassure you that Andrew is a force for good in South Bend. I have the privilege of working with him often as a co-founder on 3° of Separation, a networking group whose goal is to accelerate Michiana’s emerging startup ecosystem by connecting entrepreneurs and collaborators. Andrew has also been a trusted advisor for me regarding my ConnectHelp idea.

Andrew received his MBA from Notre Dame and chose to stay in South Bend to participate in the revitalization of our fine city. Since I am such a proponent of revitalization (thus the name of my blog), I applaud his efforts. I hope I am encouraging you to get connected to this cause. If you click the link above, you can give (if the site is not ready yet, it will be soon; add your email address so that you will be alerted when it is ready and know that Andrew assures me that your email is safe with him). If you would like to read more about The State, and hear about this in Andrew’s words, check out his blog here.

Let’s help bring The Pride of South Bend back to its former glory. Like I said, we all benefit!


March 12, 2013 at 10:47 pm Leave a comment

Ethnic Expressions

It’s March 1st and Friday, so you know what that means: First Friday in downtown South Bend. The theme tonight is “Ethnic Expressions.” From Latin flair at Chicory Cafe to Irish folktales by the fireplace at Fiddler’s Hearth and Flamenco dance demonstrations at The Music Village, you will find diverse culture all around you. As usual, there is much to do downtown. I recommend you check out DTSB’s website for more info, grab the fam and head on out. By the way, be sure to check out the marquee at The State tonight. Then let me know what you learned.

March 1, 2013 at 11:17 am Leave a comment

Kickstart Something Yummy

…and something totally rad. Jackie & Chris von der Mehden want to create an Oneironautical Headquarters. What? No worries, as they’ve explained this. An oneironaut is a navigator of dreams. In these headquarters, you can dream too, as it is a “community co-working space, artistic launching pad, and social change machine, fueled by coffee and sweets from downstairs.”

Jackie & Chris already have a presence in Michiana as Rabbit Moon Bakery. After a trip to Paris, Chris fell in love with macarons (no, not macaroons). He has turned that obsession into a great confectionery business. While the business is thriving (thanks to places like Purple Porch), it’s time for a storefront. But the idea is bigger than a mere storefront. It’s a chance to help revitalize downtown. It’s an opportunity to work cooperatively with other dreamers. An idea to change the conversation around business from competition to collaboration. Did I mention radical? Or, as they might call it, “weird.”

Their goal is “to restore the first of many empty buildings in the area and turn it into a thriving hub of art, culture, business, and community…  created a new model of doing business (that is really a new model of living) based on the simple truth that when we work together, everything is possible.”

I am completely fascinated by their concept and excited to see it in South Bend. But to be successful, they need community support. Consider investing in their idea in return for some yummy benefits. You can read all about those benefits and more about their dream at their Kickstarter page:

Let’s make 2013 amazing for South Bend. Let’s “be the change.”

December 12, 2012 at 11:29 am 2 comments

Santa Claus is Coming to Town

As you know, he’s making a list and checking it twice. But don’t let that stop you from enjoying the festivities downtown South Bend this weekend (plus, there’s still time to make it onto Santa’s good list). Be in front of the Morris by 5:30pm on Friday (12/7) to witness Santa’s splendid arrival and the annual tree lighting ceremony. Free cookies and hot chocolate make this event extra festive!

Afterwards, wander around downtown and check out some of the holiday pop-up shops (Brew Werks is in front of State Theatre – be sure to pop in). Don’t miss Santa’s Gingerbread Village as well as the sleigh rides. There is also a tree and wreath sale that benefits NNN (Near Northwest Neighborhood). Santa’s Workshop has been set up inside the College Football Hall of Fame. Fun, fun!

The festivities continue on Saturday with Breakfast with Santa at Fiddler’s Hearth and South Bend Civic Theatre‘s play A Laura Ingall’s Wilder Christmas. With so much to do and see, there is something for everyone. Grab a friend, neighbor, family and enjoy all that your downtown has to offer! I’ve mentioned just a small bit of what’s happening downtown, so be sure to check out the special website that lists all the fun:

December 6, 2012 at 2:59 pm Leave a comment

Who Doesn’t Love a Treasure Hunt?

What comes to mind when you think “treasure hunt?” Are you whisked back to your childhood and those fun treasure hunts at special parties? Or perhaps recall a team building activity at work? Or are you a modern treasure hunter that uses geocaching?

Whatever comes to mind, we can all agree that a treasure hunt is an adventure. And who doesn’t love an adventure? Well, be prepared to enjoy a local adventure with the Shop Local Treasure Hunt on November 24, 2012.

You’ve heard me talk about the benefits of shopping, dining, supporting local businesses and services. You know that more money stays in our area when we do that. So, some smart people (spearheaded by Willow Wetherall and working in collaboration with other organizers and DTSB) have decided to combine the shop local theme with a treasure hunt.

Brilliant, right? I know!  I just LOVE ideas that highlight the awesomeness that is South Bend with new and innovative ways to experience them. So let’s show our support of local businesses (as well as these hardworking volunteers) by taking our feet to the streets next Saturday. If you can’t be there physically, plan to engage online. Let’s keep cool ideas coming!

For more about this new event, you can check out their Facebook page: (If this link doesn’t work, when on Facebook, search for Shop Local Treasure Hunt)

November 16, 2012 at 12:19 pm Leave a comment

Kids’ Night Out is Downtown on Friday

It’s November, so you know what that means: First Fridays in Downtown South Bend. There are so many activities for the family, from music and dance classes at The Music Village to bookmark making at Idle Hours Bookshop to geocaching to free kids’ hot chocolate at Main Street Coffee House to hay rides (small fee) to free trolley rides. And that’s just to name a few things. There’s also entertainment and special dining promotions and other activites. It’ll be a great night to hang out downtown. Make plans now and bring your neighbors! Get more info at DTSB’s website:

November 1, 2012 at 4:23 pm Leave a comment

Fabulous First Friday Fun!

There is much to do tonight in the Bend, so grab some friends and head downtown for the monthly First Friday activity: Art Alive! There is “Artists in Action” where artists will be creating custom art, in addition to a community art project and an ARTitecture hunt. It sounds like fun! Plus, there are so many great places to grab dinner downtown. Have you tried the new Cafe Navarre? Did I mention that there is music in the KeyBank plaza? For more about this DTSB event that begins at 5pm, check out their website:

Now if  the downtown festivities aren’t quite up your alley, then consider heading over to Eddy Commons for their Kickoff Concert Block Party. There is live music and, of course, all those dining establishments ready for you and your party. This event begins at 7pm.

What are your plans for tonight? Share your ideas here…

September 7, 2012 at 12:09 pm Leave a comment

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