The Orlando Main Street Program held an an awards program on Tuesday, October 29 to recognize and commemorate outstanding local Main Street projects, activities and volunteers.
Each Main Street District selected one winner to represent their District in the three individual award categories. Mills 50 Main Street winners were:
Volunteer of the Year – Will Walker, owner of
Will’s Pub & lil indies.
Will has been an integral part of the success of Orlando’s independent music scene since 1995. He is the creative force behind Southern Fried Sundays, a monthly music event, with proceeds benefitting The Mustard Seed and other non-profit organizations. Will supports Mills 50 in many ways – from brainstorming ideas for potential promotions to donating beer for events. He is the one guy that can be counted on to say “how can I help” and “what do you need”? Will recently hosted a puppet show on a Saturday afternoon called “Davey Rocker’s Barnyard Jam”. It was very well received with almost one hundred adults and children attending. He is partnering with Mills 50 on a family themed holiday event, to include, what else but a puppet show! Will Walker is a great community partner!
Business/Merchant of the Year – Track Shack & owners Jon & Betsy Hughes.
Track Shack is the oldest running store in Central Florida. After college, Jon went to work at Track Shack. Within a year, he became a partner and in 1983, Jon and Betsy bought out the other owners. Track Shack hosts 35 – 40 races annually, with anywhere from 1,000 to 14,000 people in a race. Many of these races take place in Mills 50 & surrounding areas, thereby introducing runners to our local businesses. Jon and Betsy are well known for their philanthropic work through their Track Shack Foundation. This foundation has touched the lives of thousands and contributed over $2 million into the greater Central Florida community. An original Mills 50 business member, Track Shack supports the district through event participation and marketing support. Jon and Betsy also are members of the newly formed “buy local” task force.
Best Private Improvement of the Year – Quantum Leap Winery & owners Jill Ramsier & David Forrester.
Jill and David converted a 17,000 square foot warehouse at 1312 Wilfred Drive into a state of the art facility, complete with cork floors, upscale furnishings and original art. The Tasting Room was designed for sophistication, comfort and conversation, validating the concept that great wine and those who love it deserve a great space. Jill and David search for good quality, sustainably grown wine and transport it in large vessels to the winery, where it is stored, finished, blended and packaged. This environmentally conscious practice offer consumers quality wine from a local winery while respecting our environment. Their wines are served in many area bars and restaurants. In addition to being known for its wines, Quantum Leap has gained a reputation as a special event venue, hosting weddings, receptions, conferences and meetings as well as wine-themed events.
Mills 50 thanks these and the dozens of other business owners who support the District and continue to make it “the intersection of creativity + culture”!