Spring is finally here and our downtown is springing to life with new projects and businesses set to open soon.

The Bluenose Gopher Public House has been an ongoing project for a few years, but now construction has started on the cooperatively owned building at 681 Prentice St. After many volunteer demo days, the interior walls are up and ready for the plumbing and electric to go in. Thanks to a loan from the Southwest Initiative Foundation and member loans, this business will be open this summer.

Bluenose Gopher Public House will serve local beer and wine, a menu featuring locally sourced foods paired with local history around the Prohibition era. It will also include space for new ideas, projects and businesses to share their plans with the public and have the use of Wi-Fi printer and display space. A cooperative is owned and governed by its members, learn more on their website www. bluenose.coop. 

On the next block next to F and M Insurance is downtown’s newest creative space “The Yes House”, recently donated to Ashley Hanson by the Dalin family. It already has it’s first resident artist, Jessica Gorman. Jessica is working on a photography project, “Follow the Yellowstone Trail, “ which will document the small towns and architecture along this historic route which follows Hwy 212. Follow this project on Facebook - The YES House - for the latest events and updates on this creative space. Have an idea for the space? Drop it into the mailbox in front.

Riverside Voices project along the flood wall with the first Writer’s Workshop held this past Monday at Jimmy’s Pizza, join us next Monday at 5:30 p.m. if you have words or ideas to share. This will be completed this summer with the grant deadline in September. It’s exciting to see all this creative energy in Granite Falls, including students and all ages. 

Important reasons for all these projects are to create an environment for residents to enjoy, create a sense of pride in our young people when they participate, encourage visitors to come to our town to spend money in our local businesses and make it easier for our employers to recruit new employees in this tight job market. When people consider a new position, they don’t just look at the job but the entire community and opportunities for entertainment, the arts and quality of life.