Main Streets Conference 2012

Rediscover Main Street

The 2012 National Main Streets Conference offers a program filled with unique and valuable educational opportunities; an opportunity to network and share ideas with leaders in the Main Street field as well as a chance to meet with product and service providers.

Conference Schedule

To see a full schedule for the conference, check out the schedule at a glance. Download a copy fo the Final Program. You will also receive a copy when you pick up your registration packet in Baltimore.

Conference Session Handouts

For session handouts, please go to the schedule at a glance. Look for the sessions that have handouts available after the title. We will continue to update this site as presenters send us their materials.

Opening Plenary session

Small businesses are the backbone of the American economy, generating 80 percent of jobs and half of the GDP. They also create the foundation for healthy, diverse neighborhoods and strong local economies. Amy Cortese, author of Locavesting: The Revolution in Local Investing and How to Profit From it, asks, then, why are we starving these vital enterprises? Cortese, an award-winning journalist, will explain how a small shift in investment away from multinational corporations toward locally owned enterprises can reap enormous economic and social benefits. Locavesting is a call to rethink the way we invest so that we support the small businesses that create jobs and healthy, resilient communities.

Program Manager Sessions

Are you a Main Street program manager? Are you seasoned? New? Either way, we have some specific programming just for you. Seasoned managers - those with more than five years experience managing a Main Street program will kick off Sunday afternoon with an exciting peer-to-peer network exchange of advanced topics. Newer managers will have an opportunity on Tuesday afternoon to join in an interactive roundtable discussion to address your most challenging issues. Whether you are new or have been around awhile, don't miss these opportunities to increase your leadership abilities.

Preservation as an Economic Engine: Just the Facts

Preservationists know that restoring the fabric and character of historic buildings and streetscapes can create jobs and stimulate economic vitality in communities. But where are the research and success stories to make our case to government officials and disbelieving public? Hear from national experts and local practitioners as they present case studies of rural and urban communities who have the facts to back up their success stories.

Urban Main Street Summit

It’s been 18 years since Boston decided to give the Main Street Approach a whirl in an urban environment, igniting the spark for the first citywide Main Street program. Today, there is a growing urban network, with interest building each year. Two back-to-back, 75-minute sessions will discuss research and best practices, question “what is urban?”, and look at ways to adapt Main Street to urban environments. What’s next for urban Main Streets? Where can, and should, we go from here? Be a part of this unprecedented convening of Main Street leaders to take a closer look at the Main Street Approach in urban settings and help chart new paths for the Main Street network and the methodology. Complementary urban educational content is scheduled for Tuesday and Wednesday to allow practitioners to focus on urban-specific sessions. 

Recruit an Exhibitor, Get $100

Earn a $100 rebate on your registration fee by recruiting your favorite business, nonprofit and/or government agency to exhibit at the 2012 Main Streets Conference Exhibit Hall. Get more informaiton and details on the Main Street Expo page.