Roundtable on economic development hosted

By Mindy Kearns - Special to OVP

MASON — An inaugural mayor’s roundtable on economic development was held recently in the Town of Mason.

Over a dozen business owners, prospective owners, and others joined to discuss the current economic climate in the town, as well as available business locations and buildings.

Mayor Kristopher Clark led the discussion, which was held at Cornerstone Barber Shop and Outfitters. Those attending mulled several ideas that would not only help the current business people, but also those thinking of opening a business and even new families moving into town.

Everyone was in agreement that a list of available properties and buildings needs to be identified, as well as any residents who are willing to sell. A list of present businesses, including home-based services, such as caregivers for the elderly, would be beneficial for newcomers, it was decided.

Different needs and wants were discussed as far as identifying businesses and services that attendees felt would be successful in Mason. The possibility of an incubator project that would offer several spaces under one roof was suggested. It could provide lower rent for anyone wanting to start a business and wanting to get their footing before leasing or buying a larger and more expensive facility.

The marketing and promotion of current businesses were examined. Community commercials, social media, and even businesses helping each other by word of mouth were all considered.

Upcoming events were discussed, including Mason Main Street on April 30 along Second Street. The street from Anderson to Center will be closed for craft vendors, food trucks, entertainers, and special sales from established businesses. Additional outside activities were encouraged by attendees. It was also decided to try a Main Street Music Series for the spring and summer.

Stewart-Johnson V.F.W. Post 9926 Commander Ronie Wheeler and Senior Vice Commander Ray Varian attended to tell business owners about the Mason County Veterans Monument that will be built in Mason at the base of the Bridge of Honor. Set to be built in two phases, the project total is estimated at $500,000. More information on the project can be found on Facebook at “Mason County WV Veterans Memorial.”

Clark said a second meeting will be held in April, with time, date, and location to be announced.

© 2022 Ohio Valley Publishing, all rights reserved.

By Mindy Kearns

Special to OVP

Mindy Kearns is a freelance writer for Ohio Valley Publishing, email her at [email protected]

Mindy Kearns is a freelance writer for Ohio Valley Publishing, email her at [email protected]