News Flash


Posted on: June 15, 2023

Main Street Department receives national accreditation for 2023

Main Street American Accredited logo

The City of Lenoir Main Street Department has once again been designated as an Accredited Main Street America™ program in 2023. This accreditation is Main Street America’s top-tier recognition.

The City of Lenoir became North Carolina's twelfth Main Street America Community in 1984. Since then, the number of Main Street and Small Town Main Street communities has grown to 70.

Main Street Director Kaylynn Horn said that accreditation is not a given, and staff has to work every year to meet specific benchmarks. 

"What I am most proud of with this designation is that it takes many people in the community to reach these benchmarks," Director Horn said. "It illustrates that all of us working together - volunteers and boards, businesses and property owners, City Council and Staff, and many others - can create impact and make a difference. Maintaining this accreditation is something that all of us can be proud of."

A boy rides over a ramp during the Lenoir Bicycle Festival held on June 3, 2023, in Downtown Lenoir A boy rides off a ramp during the 2nd Annual Lenoir Bicycle Festival held June 3, 2023, in Downtown Lenoir.Children sing on the Downtown stage during Light Up Lenoir, Nov. 17, 2022Children sing on the Downtown stage during Light Up Lenoir, Nov. 17, 2022.
A neon heart shines above the Love Letters for Local box Tuesday evening, Feb. 7, 2023, in DowntownIn February, Main Street staff encourage people to write a love letter to their favorite downtown business or businesses.People march in the Mad Hatter's Pumpkin Patch Parade in Downtown Lenoir, Friday, Oct. 28, 2022People march in the Mad Hatter's Pumpkin Patch Parade, Friday, Oct. 28, 2022, in Downtown Lenoir.

The Main Street staff, community members, and downtown businesses have a lot to be proud of. Since 2018, Lenoir's Main Street program has won eight N.C. Main Street awards including:

  • Best Economic Recovery Initiative: Pivots, Participation, & Patronage (PPP) with Digital Platforms Initiatives
  • Best Endangered Property Rescue: Stine's Ice Cream Parlor Building, 818 Harper Ave. 
  • Best Volunteer Recruitment: Training and Recognition Development Program ~ Be A Part of What Makes This Work 
  • Best Downtown Special Event: Carolina Tattoo & Arts Gathering 
  • Best Branding & Image-Building Campaign: TOGETHER WE CREATE Downtown Lenoir Branding
  • Best Innovation: Moving Lenoir to the Second Floor Initiative
  • Best Endangered Property Rescue: Little Building with the BIG Impact - 122 Boundary Street
  • Best Downtown Special Event: North Carolina Gravity Games

Thanks to Main Street staff, Lenoir is one of 12 communities across the country that was awarded a National Park Service / Main Street America Façade Improvement grant. The grant funding was awarded to make improvements to 814 Harper Ave. The building now houses the Wolf Moon Salt Cave and Stress Reduction Center. 

"Economic development through historic preservation is at the core of what we do," Main Street Community Engagement Coordinator Matthew Anthony said. "This grant helps to put our historic properties back into good, productive use and upgrade facades." 

Two more properties are currently under review by the grant administrators.

814 Harper Avenue before improvements814 Harper Avenue before improvements
814 Harper Avenue Wolf Moon Salt Cave 01Wolf Moon Salt Cave and Stress Reduction Center opened at 814 Harper Ave. in July 2022.


Main Street staff also manages the Building Upgrades and Improvements for Lenoir Downtown program (BUILD). The BUILD program provides matching grants to encourage property owners to make improvements to downtown buildings. The goal of the program is to make downtown buildings more attractive for new, existing, and expanding businesses.

Main Street organizes and assists with many events in Downtown Lenoir including:

  • North Carolina Gravity Games
  • North Carolina Blackberry Festival
  • Wood, Fire, Smoke Festival
  • Carolina Tattoo & Arts Gathering
  • Downtown Cruise-Ins
  • Lenoir Bicycle Festival
  • Summer Music/Movie Madness
  • Light Up Lenoir and holiday lights downtown
  • Starry Night Christmas Parade

Most recently, Main Street staff worked to develop the Downtown Lenoir Social District. Staff are currently helping create a new Downtown Lenoir Master Plan. Click the following links to learn more about those projects:

Mayor Joe Gibbons said the City's Main Street staff stay very busy taking care of all those programs, events, promotions, and projects.

"There is a lot that goes into managing a Main Street program, and Kaylynn and Matthew do a wonderful job," Mayor Gibbons said. "They manage economic development programs, they organize events, they promote downtown businesses. They love Lenoir and want to see Downtown prosper. I'm really proud of the work they do, and they deserve to be recognized."

For more information about downtown events, programs, businesses, and opportunities, visit For more information about Main Street America, visit

Downtown business owners hold Shop Small letters in front of Across the Grain in Downtown LenoirMain Street staff help promote Small Business Saturday every year in Downtown Lenoir.Members of the WNC Sculpture Center pour iron into molds at Wood, Fire, Smoke 2022Staff with the WNC Sculpture Center pour iron into molds during the Wood, Fire Smoke Festival held Oct. 8, 2022, in Downtown Lenoir.
Hundreds of people walk on North Main Street during the 2022 N.C. Blackberry Festival, July 15, 2022Hundreds of people walk on North Main Street during the 2022 N.C. Blackberry Festival, July 15, 2022.A map showing North Carolina Main Street Communities as of August 2022The graphic above shows the North Carolina Main Street and Small Town Main Street Communities as of August 2022.

Facebook Twitter Email

Other News in News

Mayor Gibbons shakes the hand of Ravens Head Coach Tommy Crump, Sept. 5, 2023

Council honors Ravens Baseball Team

Posted on: September 11, 2023
Sorry, We're Closed graphic

City facilities closed for Labor Day

Posted on: August 30, 2023
City Council and Kim Case pose with myFutureNC resolution Tuesday, Aug. 1, 2023

Council lends support for myFutureNC

Posted on: August 4, 2023
Boil Water Advisory Canceled, Tap Water Safe to Drink

Boil water advisory lifted

Posted on: June 25, 2023
A mom and daughter at the Neon Night Ride

The Neon Night Ride is back!

Posted on: May 19, 2023
A front load scoops up compost during the compost giveaway / sale in April 2019

Compost giveaway/sale this Saturday

Posted on: April 26, 2023
K9 Uwais department photo

K9 Uwais retires from duty

Posted on: April 19, 2023
DLG Group Community Input Session

City seeking input on Downtown Master Plan

Posted on: February 22, 2023
Runners get ready to start the Firecracker run June 30, 2018.

The Leprechaun Leap is March 18

Posted on: February 8, 2023
Love Letters for Local neon heart with Downtown Lenoir banner in background

Show some love to local businesses

Posted on: February 2, 2023
Black History Month

Celebrate Black History Month in Lenoir

Posted on: February 1, 2023

Martin Luther King Jr. Day celebration

Posted on: January 12, 2023
smart phone key pad

Know who to call for City services

Posted on: December 30, 2022
Sorry, We're Closed

Christmas and New Year's closings

Posted on: December 20, 2022
Boil Water Advisory Canceled, Tap Water Safe to Drink

Tap water in Bushtown now safe to drink

Posted on: December 15, 2022

Council meeting canceled

Posted on: December 15, 2022
GivingTuesday logo 2022

GivingTuesday in Lenoir

Posted on: November 28, 2022
Shop Small logo 2022

Shop Small this Saturday in Lenoir

Posted on: November 23, 2022
Sorry, We're Closed

City facilities closed for Thanksgiving

Posted on: November 18, 2022
Santa listens to the Christmas wishes of a young girl during Light Up Lenoir, Nov. 21, 2019

Light Up Lenoir next week in Downtown

Posted on: November 10, 2022
Happy Veterans Day

City facilities closed for Veterans Day

Posted on: November 8, 2022
Wilson basketball

Youth basketball registration open

Posted on: November 8, 2022
A close up of the City Clock in Downtown Lenoir, Oct. 31, 2022

City removing old clock tower

Posted on: November 1, 2022
road work ahead sign

City paving streets next week

Posted on: October 28, 2022
Downtown Lenoir logo square

City developing new Downtown Master Plan

Posted on: October 19, 2022
Truck performing leaf pickup

Leaf collection starts in November

Posted on: October 17, 2022
NWS Hurricane Ian track as of 11:34 am Friday, Sept. 29, 2022

Be prepared for flooding, power outages

Posted on: September 29, 2022
Santa Claus with dancers in the 2021 Starry Night Christmas Parade in Downtown Lenoir

Christmas parade application online

Posted on: September 27, 2022
City Seal 2017

Tomorrow's City Council meeting canceled

Posted on: September 19, 2022
American Flag, Photo by David Dibert

Council honors Patriot Day in Lenoir

Posted on: September 9, 2022
Council presents the 40th Anniversary resolution to Caldwell Rotary Club, Sept. 6, 2022

Council honors Caldwell Rotary Club

Posted on: September 8, 2022
Baseball glove, baseball and bat

Fall baseball registration ends Friday

Posted on: August 17, 2022
City LNR icon

Weekend events in Lenoir

Posted on: July 1, 2022
Fireworks explode during the 2018 July 4th Fireworks show

July 4th fireworks and closings

Posted on: June 29, 2022
Council presents a resolution to Mac Martin honoring 17 years of service on the Planning Board

Council honors Mac Martin

Posted on: June 8, 2022
Kids swimming in the outdoor pool at the Lenoir Aquatic and Fitness Center

Outdoor pool opens tomorrow

Posted on: May 27, 2022
City of Lenoir 2020 NC3C Excellence in Communications Awards

City wins communications awards

Posted on: May 10, 2022
City of Lenoir Police Telecommunicators Rhonda Hollowell and Dustin Eller

Council honors Telecommunicators

Posted on: May 4, 2022
City worker loads compost into a trailer

Compost giveaway #2 this Saturday

Posted on: April 19, 2022
Easter Eggs of various colors

Easter Egg Hunt next Saturday

Posted on: April 1, 2022
City worker loads compost into a trailer

Compost giveaway this Saturday

Posted on: March 31, 2022
road work ahead sign

Paving on Beall Street tomorrow

Posted on: March 28, 2022
Beall Street and Holly Court street sign

No parking on Beall Street Thursday

Posted on: March 22, 2022
Leprechaun Chase square social media banner

Leprechaun Chase back for round two

Posted on: March 10, 2022
Water line break graphic

Water line break on US 321

Posted on: February 11, 2022
Ben Willis

City Council honors Ben Willis

Posted on: January 24, 2022
Sgt. James Moore staff photo

City Council honors Sgt. James Moore

Posted on: January 21, 2022
Garbage Cart Placement Graphic

Tuesday garbage collection postponed

Posted on: January 18, 2022
were hiring, come work for the City of Lenoir

Job openings with the City of Lenoir

Posted on: January 5, 2022

State and local burn bans lifted

Posted on: December 14, 2021
City of Lenoir Public Utiliities

Council approves bid to replace sewer line

Posted on: December 10, 2021
A single luminary illuminated at night at Blue Ridge Memorial Park, Dec. 152017

Luminary display postponed to Dec. 17

Posted on: December 8, 2021
Lieutenant John Howard

Howard promoted to Police lieutenant

Posted on: December 7, 2021
burn ban icon

City of Lenoir issues burn ban

Posted on: December 3, 2021
Construction equipment sits on the new, partially graded section of Hotel Street

Hotel Street project underway

Posted on: November 23, 2021
Sorry, We're Closed

City facilities closed for Thanksgiving

Posted on: November 22, 2021
Council members, business owners, and employees hold up letters that spell out Shine On Shop Small

Mayor proclaims Small Business Saturday

Posted on: November 19, 2021
Workers paving Bethel Colony Road yesterday, Nov. 16, 2021

Contractors paving streets this week

Posted on: November 17, 2021
Korean War veterans watch Korean children perform during the ceremony marking the 60th anniversary o

Veterans Day ceremony in Downtown Lenoir

Posted on: November 9, 2021
Star Steps dancers perform in Downtown Lenoir during the 2018 Christmas Parade

Christmas parade set for Dec. 3

Posted on: October 29, 2021
basketball on gym floor at MLK Jr Center

Youth basketball registration open

Posted on: October 25, 2021
Truck performing leaf pickup

Leaf collection starts in November

Posted on: October 25, 2021

Boil Water Advisory Lifted

Posted on: October 9, 2021
water boiling in a pot on a stove

Boil Water Advisory!

Posted on: October 9, 2021
Ladies walking on the Lenoir Greenway

Section of greenway closed Tuesday morning

Posted on: September 27, 2021