To the editor:
In his recent article “New Downtown” [Atmore News, October 25, 2017], Don Fletcher was correct when he stated that there is a lot of excitement in the air these days regarding the fact that with a bit of help downtown Atmore can be restored to its past glory.
There are many volunteers who represent multiple organizations who donate time and effort to improve Atmore. We realize that we face an uphill battle. Of course we do not want to see our efforts be put on a shelf to collect dust. Our recent win (with the collaboration of the Atmore City Government) of the Delta Regional Authority’s Place Making Grant comes with many hours of follow up consultation and training. The grant will allow us to hire a highly recommended consultant to guide our efforts for revitalization. The grant is not just for a study, it is for a road map that will hopefully assist in our efforts to bring in new businesses and even new citizens to Atmore. We have for several years now been working very hard to save our historical heritage by purchasing and saving the Strand Theatre. This has been done without ANY studies but solely by hard work, uncounted volunteer hours and many fund raising events and hours and hours of grant writing.
Atmore’s local banks do indeed provide vital support and financial assistance to the efforts by these organizations, however, the main time and ground work comes from groups such as the Pride of Atmore and the Atmore Historical Society. Our vision to help our community needs only support, not negativity. We constantly invite any and all support from the citizens of Atmore. We need volunteers to help achieve our goals. After all, if we succeed, Atmore succeeds. There are many businesses, the City Government, and citizens who have supported our efforts and to them we send out a heartfelt “THANK YOU.” We as a community need positivity, not nay-sayers. If we do not try, then we most certainly will fail. Change does not come easily, it takes hard work and we constantly face push back from those who think that our efforts will fail. Yet, facing many obstacles, we refuse to give up or be defeated. Atmore is a wonderful community and we most definitely do not want our efforts to be only a pipe dream.