The weeklong celebration, focused on downtown but inclusive of all of Asheville, would serve to promote independent restaurants and retail shops, Asheville Downtown Commission member Franzi Charen told her fellow commissioners last week. Charen, the owner of Hip Replacements clothing boutique, is also the founder of Asheville Grown Business Alliance, the city’s buy local movement.
The promotion, which will encompass Valentine’s Day and Asheville’s Mardis Gras celebration, will include all of Asheville but will be focused on downtown businesses, Charen said. To that end, the city is sponsoring the creation of 10 banners that will feature the Love Asheville logo created by Jenny Fares of Sound Mind Creative, Charen added.
More details will be announced soon.
In addition, the Asheville Grown Business Alliance is once again selling its Love Asheville Go Local Card. More than 400 locally owned, independent businesses honor the card, which offers discounts for cardholders. The card raises money for Asheville City public schools and last year raised more than $19,000 ($84,000 since the start of the program six years ago.) The card costs $18.
“We love Asheville, local businesses are the backbone of our economy, key to our vibrant local culture and the spirit of our city,” Charen says in a press release for the card.
“Our organization’s role is to bring localization and the reorganization of work for the common good to the forefront of people’s imagination in our pursuit of a strong economy for all.”