New Berwick Area Merchants group up and running

Nancy Kelly
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“Cheerful, playful, social” – that’s what Berwick-area business people are seeking in their newly-formed merchant’s association, says Berwick’s director of community development.

Julie Glaser said 15 business and community stakeholders were present at the June 28 merchant’s mixer, where the Berwick Area Merchants was officially christened.

“We have been formed,” said Glaser of the group, spear-headed by Berwick’s economic development committee, which will have a “marketing focus.”

At the group’s inaugural get-together, attendees were tasked with identifying a Berwick area asset that has yet to be capitalized on and offering suggestions for “a great idea that was do-able in one year,” explained Glaser.

“We wanted to hear ideas that could be done simply and cost-efficiently. This first session really was about making merchants aware of what they can do to create momentum for their business.”

Attendees were in agreement the town would benefit from making Berwick’s commercial area pet-friendly. Establishing a year-round visitor information service at the Kings Mutual Century Centre was also mentioned, as was support for continued branding of Berwick as “a small town with personable service” and unrestrictive parking guidelines.

Taxpayers are kicking in $2,500 for the BAM initiative in 2014-2015. Glaser said a fee-for-membership structure and meeting schedule has yet to be determined.

“The group will essentially be event-focused, so activities and meetings will evolve accordingly. People will participate in what they are inspired to participate in.”

The group plans to organize business opportunities to coincide with already established events, including the Apple Capital Museum-hosted summertime drive, taking place July 16; the July 26 town-wide yardsale; and the town’s involvement in the Uncommon Common Art project.

Berwick Area Merchants aren’t looking “for a stuffy, formal structure” to get bogged down in, pointed out Glaser.

“This group has a ‘just do’ attitude.”

Organizations: Berwick Area Merchants, Kings Mutual Century Centre, Apple Capital Museum

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