TICONDEROGA-Ticonderoga Montcalm Street Partnership has announced its "Dollars for Downtown - Change for Change" program.
"I was standing in front of the Glens Falls National Bank in the street during the first Streetfest," said Anne McDonald, "when it hit me. We ought to get big mayonnaise jars and put them around town for people to make donations to improve downtown Ti. It would be sort of like a coin drop, without getting in the way of traffic."
That idea has been cooking for almost two years. So what's so hard about pulling this off?
"Well, first you have to get big mayonnaise jars without the mayonnaise - not easy to pull off - but the good folks at Kraft Foods came through and sent mayonnaise jars without mayonnaise," McDonald said. "Then people have to get downtown merchants to agree to have them in their stores near their checkout area. Then you have to publicize the effort. Then you have to have a way to pick up the donations in the mayonnaise jars. Then you have to get all those pesky approvals from whomever."
No, it hasn't been easy.
"But," said McDonald, a lifelong resident of Ticonderoga, "I think we're almost ready to start."
Along the way the Ticonderoga Montcalm Street board of directors has weighed in with their advice.
"We were on our way to reinventing the wheel," said Rolly Allen, and finally someone said, "OK, let's just do it."
"Anne saved us from making this really difficult," says John Bartlett, chairman of TMSP.
McDonald still thinks this is a great idea and so do others. So shoppers will have the opportunity to release their spare change into mayonnaise jars in various Ti stores. The money will be collected and used to attract more business for downtown and the community.
"Dollars for downtown - Change for change. It's a plan which has a great objective, and now that we're ready to roll it seems really easy," McDonald said.
The Ticonderoga Montcalm Street Partnership Seeks to create meaningful, long-term change in Ticonderoga's traditional business district and to promote economic revitalization and consequent historic preservation by employing precepts of the National Trust Main Street Center of the National Trust for Historic Preservations.