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Wayne Post
  • Reinventing Macedon: Community rediscovering pride through revitalization

  • Even as the village of Lyons prepares to dissolve, the village of Macedon is pressing onward to reinvent itself.

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  • Even as the village of Lyons prepares to dissolve, the village of Macedon is pressing onward to reinvent itself.
    After battling and defeating dissolution three times, Macedon is making slow, but steady progress to become a local destination.
    “I think that so much of the impetus came from Marcey Frey and Macedon Partners,” said John Cieslinski, owner of Books ETC. and active proponent in saving the village. “Here was the chance we needed to see the possibilities for making our village visually pleasing. The neatness of the village is a contuinuing effort of the mayor and the trustees to keeps the advances that were won so early on.”
    As part of the revitalization, the village is working to engage the community by holding community events and getting people involved with any type of volunteering that goes with those events, Mayor Marie Cramer said. To that end, in the past few months, the village has held a Firefighters Appreciation Day, a concert in the park and the community picnic during Autumn on the Erie at the newly opened Butterfly Trail along the Erie Canal. The community also welcomes new owners to the Canaltown Cinema and the demolition of the old Express Mart building followed by the construction of a new state of the art facility which is now open at the corner of 31 and South Erie Street.
    “The village of Macedon Board would like to thank Express Mart for their strong commitment to this community for all of us to enjoy,” Cramer said. “This is a great asset to our community. And the Butterfly Nature Trail and boat launch is a walkable nature therapy trail.”
    The Erie Canal is becoming a renewed asset in the reinvention process.
    “We’d like to tempt boaters to get off the boat for a while and see what we have to offer,” Cieslinski said.
    Cieslinski notes that part of the village’s reinvention deals with noticing what the village has — “a great traffic flow, a fabulous history and a true community.”
    The village is doing well since the dissolution failed, Village Trustee Marcy Frey said. Frey is also active in the Village Pride Committee, which has been central in the village’s re-evolution. There are challenges, Cieslinski admits, but merchants are reporting increases and after languishing for so long, the village recognizes the fact it will take time to make a full recovery.
    “Economically, things have not changed too much as it has only been a short time since the dissolution vote,” Cramer said. “One thing we can report on is a major planning grant, the Brownfield Program, and it encompasses economic planning.”
    The Brownfield Opportunity Area grant is funding available to complete revitalization plans and implementation stategies for eligible areas. The grant fits right in with the village’s efforts.
    Page 2 of 2 - “It will allow us to have a future vision of this village and make it even more inviting, easily accessible and create the sense that when you are in the village you see our identity and quaintness without hesitation,” Cramer said. “It will be: ‘Come Home to Macedon Village’.”
    The Macedon Village Pride Committee is helping through the exploration of the many different facets of the community that make Macedon unique and looking for ways to bring them all together. The group is always encouraging anyone who would like to participate to come aboard.
    “They feel the more helping, the more ideas, the more will get accomplished,” Frey said.
    But the reinvention process needs more than the committee to reach its goal and so the mayor and Village Board is working hard to improve the village’s image as a place people will want to visit and stay for a while.
    “The village government has taken a hard look and listened to the concerns that some had and are working to improve those areas of concern,” Frey said. “The residents are seeing for themselves that we are working for them and they also enjoy seeing the community participating in the community events that the local village businesses and government have organized.”
    These efforts aren’t lost on village supporters like Cieslinski.
    “I love this village and I want to see it and the residents here prosper,” he said. “Certainly people are beginning to see the truth — Macedon is the center of the universe.”
    Get involved
    The Village Pride Committee meets regularly at 7 p.m. at Books, ETC., 78 W Main St., Macedon. For more information call John Cieslinski at 585-474-4116 or email books_etc@yahoo.com.
    Visit “Macedon NY The Center of the Universe” on Facebook for information on upcoming events.

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