Shortly after Mississippi Drive closed for construction last month, I recall driving down a busy two-way 2nd Street and thinking how great it was to see the area full of traffic. I always enjoy my drive down 2nd Street. I like to see the decorated store windows, building facades and blooming flowers. It's my hometown. It's charming. I like seeing it full of activity.

But then the first Letter to the Editor came in. Reporters hit the streets and social media came alive with the reality of what this hustle and bustle in our downtown brought with it. It seems some of the businesses are experiencing a dip in business from those wanting to avoid the congestion or those who maybe can't find a place to park.

I wanted to go on record to say that I work, eat and shop in the downtown daily and I have successfully navigated and parked since the construction started. There are city lots across from the Journal office, behind the block that houses Salon Incognito, Hubbles and Guadalajara and at the corner of Pine and 2nd Street. Even if you must park one or two blocks away from your destination, it's still often fewer steps than your total visit to Walmart or the grocery store. So my advice is to look at it with a positive attitude and brave the adventure.

Putting on my marketing hat, there are ebbs and flow to business ownership, and at times, more dollars must be put into marketing efforts. This may be one of those occasions. We pledge to work with any business affected and to do so in the most effective and economical way possible. We also are calling on you, our readers, to be of assistance during this time. A good marketing plan includes frequency and repetition. A kind note about your favorite store in social media, mentioned over coffee or shared with a family member can go a long way to helping make sure they are here to serve you tomorrow. You can make a difference with a positive approach to the many changes going on in our community.

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