Main Street Pascagoula won the award for Outstanding Project Promotion – Large Community for “The Flagship District.” Community partners hosted a focus group to get input from young professionals who work in Pascagoula, but live elsewhere on how to attract them to live here. As a result, Main Street obtained the city’s blessing to brand downtown The Flagship District and partnered with local artist AliceKate Berry who designed the logo. Main Street purchased banners to line the streets. Main Street’s marketing team launched Flagship District Facebook and Instagram pages to promote the downtown lifestyle.
The team also created a digital packet for industry recruiters to give to current and prospective employees that highlights residency options in the district. Efforts are paying off. Newly established downtown apartments are mostly filled with tenants who work in industries in Pascagoula.
The Pascagoula Public Art Enterprise won the award for Outstanding Public Arts Project – Large Community. The Pascagoula Public Art Enterprise fuses public art with workforce training and economic development. Led by the Walter Anderson Museum of Art, the program enlists students at the Pascagoula-Gautier School District’s College and Career Technical Institute to design, fabricate, and install large-scale steel sculptures at key arteries in Pascagoula’s downtown redevelopment master plan.
Collaborating with visiting artists, student welders, machinists, engineers, marketers, electricians, and painters are converting thousands of pounds of steel (including material sourced from Ingalls Shipbuilding) into totems of community identity that define the city’s flagship district. The first of three sculptures was dedicated in Spring 2022, with two additional sculptures slated for fabrication. The program creates an innovative model for cross-sector collaboration that supports Mississippi’s future homegrown workforce while creating a sense of place necessary for economic development impact.
“We are seeing more movement in Downtown Pascagoula than we’ve seen in many years,” said Rebecca Davis, Executive Director for Main Street Pascagoula. “The success we’re seeing cannot happen without collaboration. The projects we brought home awards for are just two examples of how community partners are coming together to revitalize our Main Street.”