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Family-Friendly Main Street America

Updated on March 7, 2012
Main Street in downtown Sarasota was mainly a street of boutiques, restaurants, and bars in 1995, and still is. Sarasota did not have many tall buildings in 1995, except for condominiums along the water and a few bank buildings (like the one at far r
Main Street in downtown Sarasota was mainly a street of boutiques, restaurants, and bars in 1995, and still is. Sarasota did not have many tall buildings in 1995, except for condominiums along the water and a few bank buildings (like the one at far r | Source

Main Street is by far one of the most popular street names in the United States. Once the common destination when going “to town”, Main Street was, and still is, the one-stop place for all shopping and business. In fact, if you want to know the pulse of a town, look to the activity of its Main Street. And it would be interesting to know just how many streets across the country that bear this name. While many Main Streets phased out through a down period, many have undergone historical preservation efforts. Today, the revival of Main Street America has introduced new and old places for the whole family to enjoy.

1928 Main Street Looking West, Boone, N.C.
1928 Main Street Looking West, Boone, N.C. | Source
Main Street, Bastrop, Texas, United States. Part of the Bastrop Commercial District which was added to the National Register of Historic Properties on December 22, 1978.
Main Street, Bastrop, Texas, United States. Part of the Bastrop Commercial District which was added to the National Register of Historic Properties on December 22, 1978. | Source
Looking northeasterly towards the intersection of 9th Street and Main Street from in front of the Miles City Saddlery, Miles City, Montana.
Looking northeasterly towards the intersection of 9th Street and Main Street from in front of the Miles City Saddlery, Miles City, Montana. | Source

Eateries

Everyone eats, and Main Street ventures are certain to turn up one or several places to grab a snack or enjoy a full-coursed meal. It is interesting to find numerous places to eat on Main Street, each offering local favorites or cuisine from around the world, in almost any town. There, patrons may find places to enjoy traditional American food and health foods from local harvests, as well as an array of cultural cuisines, includign Asian foods from China, Thailand, Malaysia and Japan, Middle Eastern foods from Lebanon, Syria, Palestine and Turkey, African food from Morocco, Egypt, Tunisia, Senegal and Kenya, and European food from Belgium, Spain, Italy and Germany.

Small Convenience Stores to Supermarkets

If a person travels down Main Street, they may come across a strip of stores in a mini mall setting and a supermarket. These stores serve the purpose of convenience by being in an easy-to-locate setting, and for business, an ideal location in any city or town.

The Butcher...

The butcher, the baker, and the candlestick maker are on Main Street -- and yes, they are easy to find. One such Main Street example has the butcher in one section of Main Street and several bakeries and candy shops on the other side of the street. And yes, the candlestick maker. Well, actually, I've seen both lighting stores and candle shops, even though most homes use electricity today. The candle specialty store features aromatherapy candles, scented for the home and also decorative as accents for a fireplace, console table or chest of drawers.While no longer the candlestick maker, modern lighting and home accent shops feature antique and modern lighting solutions -- a place to plan the redecoration of the house.

Imagine a stroll down Main Street on a warm morning that fills the senses with the sights and aromas of fresh baked bread and pastries -- inviting. Anyone can appreciate the daily efforts of these businesses that work hard to sell fresh, homemade foods everyday.

Main Street at the intersection of U.S. Route 6 and U.S. Route 15 Business in Mansfield, Tioga County, Pennsylvania.
Main Street at the intersection of U.S. Route 6 and U.S. Route 15 Business in Mansfield, Tioga County, Pennsylvania. | Source
Main Street Kimberley, Nottinghamshire, Great Britain
Main Street Kimberley, Nottinghamshire, Great Britain | Source

A Main Street in Wagga Wagga

Baylis Street, Wagga Wagga in New South Wales Australia
Baylis Street, Wagga Wagga in New South Wales Australia | Source

What Else Will You Find on Main Street?

Well, the list goes on, and each town and city is as different as the business owners at the core of their Main Street's vitality. These are a few business finds on a typical Main Street, give or take a few.

The Hardware Store. This is the place for that missing screw, necessary tool, appliance part, gardening fixture, and the weekly special for do-it-yourselfers and weekend warriors.

Main Street Bank – or Shall We Say Banks. Main Street is a convenient location for banking, and having easy access to funds on Main Street makes it easy to take money out for shopping.

The Gas Station. While driving through Main Street, what better way to not run out of gas than to have a gas station right up the road.

Automotive Parts. Well, anything can happen to a vehicle, and if a car owner can go down to a shop on Main Street for a part, then that's really convenient.

And, Yes, the Car Dealer. Every year, new customers search for good auto sales deals. Main Street is a hot spot in its town, and even for car dealers, it is one of the best locations for attracting new customers. Visit one for a new car quote ot to purchase a used car.

Boats for Sale...on Main Street? Well, if you live near the water, expect to find a boat or marine shop on Main Street.

Places for Physical Exercise and Rejuvenation – the spa, gym, martial arts, dance studios, and a place for yoga - these are commonplace of many Main Streets today.

Clothes – maybe not a department store, but certainly a few stylish boutiques.

The Library

The Lawyer

The Doctor, Dentist and Lab

Vision Care

The Hospital...and the Animal Hospital

The Printing Shop

The Pottery Shop

The Antique Store

The Beauty Salon

The Barber Shop

And there's probably more and a few unique types of shops and businesses on Main Street.

If your Main Street features most or all of these places, as does my Main Street, then I would say your town has put forth great efforts to make it true to its name. There is also the obvious customer-friendly arrangement of the Main Street setting that fosters a subtle affection in the hearts of those who frequent Main Street. The relationship between these business owners and the townspeople is one of mutual respect and benefit -- customers enjoy the options and service, and businesses enjoy the business. Perhaps as the loyalty between customers and businesses remain, the Main Street revitalization will remain the new pulse of any Main Street across the country, and around the world.

Main Street Poll

Does Your City or Town Have a Main Street?

See results

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