Wednesday, October 31, 2007

Hardwick "Revival" Now a Regional Trend

The Boston Globe today features an article on creative economies and the revival of small communities throughout New England, but with a special focus on Hardwick...

For struggling N.E. towns, revival is a work of art
Galleries, music seen luring newcomers

By Sarah Schweitzer, Globe Staff October 31, 2007

HARDWICK, Vt. - What to do about Hardwick?

This Northeast Kingdom village fell into a deep slump decades ago with the shuttering of its granite factories, leaving a hard-edged downtown of rowdy bars, an X-rated movie theater and troubleseekers. Ideas came and went; little changed. So there was ample skepticism when a band of residents proposed righting Hardwick's woes with an infusion of artists. The town, some said, had enough struggling souls.

But the group persevered. They raised $260,000 to refurbish the opera house. Its reopening in 2003 is credited with spurring other changes: An art gallery opened last spring in a former meat locker, wine tastings were inaugurated in a downtown park over the summer, a bistro featuring an Alsace-trained chef is opening in February. While Hardwick still looks the part of a dowager, with run-down Victorian homes and empty storefronts, many in town, including a growing circle of newcomers, say the town has a toehold on cool.

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1 comment:

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