Waynesburg Prosperous & Beautiful
The mission of Waynesburg Prosperous & Beautiful represents a community endeavor to preserve, and revitalize our historic downtown area as we cultivate a heightened public awareness of the educational, cultural and historical opportunities and convenience in shopping associated with visiting the Waynesburg Main Street area.
Waynesburg, PA – a Main Street Community
Did you know that Waynesburg Prosperous & Beautiful got its name from a 1906 book by Fred High called “Waynesburg, Prosperous & Beautiful: a Souvenir Pictorial Story of the Biggest and Best Little City in Pennsylvania”? Read it via the Internet Archive Virtual Library
Waynesburg Prosperous & Beautiful is a Main Street program that operates in conjunction with the Pennsylvania Downtown Center. Funded by the Department of Community and Economic Development, we are currently in year four of a five year funding cycle that subsidizes administrative and operational expenses for Main Street communities. Main Street programs emphasize critical time-sensitive stabilization and revitalization of historic downtowns business districts.
Waynesburg Prosperous & Beautiful borrowed its name from a 1906 pictorial review that was assembled by Mr. Fred High, a Waynesburg resident who believed our community was special and worthy of creating a book that captured its youthful essence. A century later, we can revisit what was, reflect upon what is, and purposefully direct what is yet to be.
In 1906, Fred High wrote the introduction of his book, “I wish to return my heartiest thanks to all who have in any way helped or aided in making this representative collection what it is. May you appreciate my work as much as I appreciate your kindness, and may this mutual effort go forth to convey a faint idea of our beautiful city, our friendly people, our homes, our businesses and some of the golden industrial opportunities that simply await your pleasure.
One hundred years have passed, and now I am in the extraordinarily gratifying position of Executive Director of the Main Street program in Waynesburg, PA.
I didn’t have the opportunity to witness Waynesburg in its youth, but I have been afforded the challenge of restoring it to the great stature it once possessed.
Thanks to those like Fred High and other citizens who had the foresight to preserve the waning vestiges of our culture; we are afforded this opportunity to recapture our history, and contemplate its affect on the present, as we purposefully direct the future of this wonderful town we call home.
Through the Years
The concept of a renewed business district in Waynesburg dates back to the federal block grant programs of the 1970's. More recently, however business owners and others sought a comprehensive strategy and methods for the long-range restructuring of the downtown area. Under the leadership of local stakeholders and merchants, contact was made with the Pennsylvania Downtown Center and an early organization was assembled and a public meeting was conducted in the fall of 2000.
The Waynesburg Chamber of Commerce, along with representatives from Waynesburg College, assumed responsibility for the process and worked with consultants from the Pennsylvania Downtown Center and executives representing DCED. The Chamber of Commerce created a Downtown Revitalization Committee. This group, with the support and prestige of the Chamber, early funding from the College, and sound advice from the Pennsylvania Downtown Center led the community in a visioning year.
The year long visioning and consensus process proposed a main street footprint, created a vision statement, recruited people to serve on the four committees, and on October 11, 2001 held a final public meeting in the restored theater. Over 200 citizens, all three county commissioners, numerous Borough Council members, the President of Waynesburg College, the Minority Leader of the Pennsylvania House of Representatives, members of the Chamber of Commerce, and senior members of the staff of DCED and the Pennsylvania Downtown Center attended the meeting.
After this planning year the Chamber Downtown Revitalization Committee was spun off to become a separate organization. Waynesburg Prosperous and Beautiful was incorporated September 20, 2001. Since that time, Waynesburg Prosperous and Beautiful has secured pledges adequate to meet the DCED match, filed a 501 (c) (3) application, hired a Main Street Manager, secured and furnished office space at the borough office and conducted significant market research, including a Market Assessment and a Parking Survey.
The mission of Waynesburg Prosperous and Beautiful represents community endeavors to preserve and revitalize our historic downtown business district as we educate the public about the conveniences of shopping and the opportunities associated with conducting businesses in Waynesburg Pennsylvania.