| By Larry Oskin |
You’ve likely heard of the Clermont Downtown Partnership (CDP). But you probably don’t know all the opportunities it has to offer.
Here’s a closer look at a key organization in Clermont and how you can enjoy its perks.
The CDP is a 501-C6 not-for-profit association of small professional business owners and entrepreneurs in and around the downtown area dedicated to the positive growth of the community.
The group creates diverse ongoing weekly, monthly and seasonal events to help you get acquainted by visiting their many unique shops, dining establishments and free entertainment opportunities — or by getting involved as a member.
You can thank the CDP for popular events like the:
- Sunday Farmer’s Market
- Fall Harvest Festival
- Fall Downtown Clermont Arts Festival
- First Friday Food Truck & Music On Montrose
- Mega Food Truck Events
- Vintage Market & Garden Shows
- Pet Parade
- Community Yard Sale
These free community events bring thousands of local area residents and visitors to enjoy downtown Clermont each year.
Plus, they offer plenty of affordable sponsorship events and opportunities to help promote associations, professional services and retail businesses.
Members can advertise on the downtown street signs, participate in all events and be listed on the CDP website.
Farmer’s Market & Merchant Faire
The CDP’s Sunday Farmer’s Market is located along Montrose Street, primarily centered between 7th and 8th streets.
Over 65 vendors each week sell an assortment of fresh, organic and hydroponic produce, seafood, cheese, sausage, baked goods, coffee, plants, collectibles, entertainment and assorted crafts.
You’ll also find a veterinarian, food trucks, fresh baked foods, chef demonstrations, entertainment and other weekly and seasonal themes.
The CDP plans to continue to expand the event with new vendors to keep it fresh and fun.
The money received from vendors and sponsors at the Farmer’s Market and from other CDP events is used to create additional activities and marketing to help promote Downtown Clermont.
The CDP started the Farmer’s Market years ago to help bring more traffic downtown to help local merchants and residents. It also was started to create a positive community spirit with special events and opportunities to celebrate Clermont.
The CDP recently added trolley rides to help you explore downtown Clermont and the waterfront.
Fun fact: The vehicle you can hop on was the first Anheuser-Busch Trolley in St. Louis, MO back in 1983!
The trolley transports people from downtown to the Clermont Historic Village, the Clermont Waterfront Park and back.
They plan to bring groups from the over 55 communities, sports teams and various local groups downtown to eat, shop and enjoy our beautiful vibrant city.
The trolley currently runs from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. on Saturdays; from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. on Sundays; and for other special events.
The Clermont Downtown Partnership announced its 2018-2019 Board of Directors as follows:
- Executive Director Sandy Farnsworth
- President Erika Shanoff (Erika’s Tea Room and The Great Floridian Marketplace)
- Vice President Marcella Imbesi (Livi & Tate and The Pink Bow Foundation)
- Treasurer Keith Mullins (Bacchus Vino, Etc.)
- Secretary Tammy McCoy (Ritter’s Frozen Custard)
- Ed Apodak
- Stephen Elmore (First United Methodist Church)
- Eileen Scates (Scates Realty)
- Randy Dillard (Ballard Financial Group)
- Reuben Santana Berroa (Champion’s Barber Studio)
- Larry Oskin (Marketing Solutions / Art Beautique)
Erika Shanoff notes, “Our Clermont Downtown Partnership really is devoted to the growth and prosperity of our historic business district. We offer a diverse calendar of events throughout the year that appeal to a variety of people. We offer something for everyone. With complimentary entertainment and family friendly events, we are always adding new attractions. Our stores and restaurants are as unique and diverse as the individuals who own them. With all of the mom and pop establishments, we are truly a hometown downtown. We hope to be your destination for shopping, dining and entertainment!”
Clermont is a popular fast-growing city here in Lake County with about 35,000 residents. The city is residential in character and its economy is centered in retail trade, lodging and tourism-oriented restaurants.
Members can network with other business owners, promote their business and help the community.
The Clermont Downtown currently has about 70 members. The membership costs $100 and includes:
- Monthly meetings often with guest speakers at 8-9:45 a.m. the third Wednesday of each month at the Clermont Historic Village
- Monthly socials hosted at members’ locations to get acquainted with other business owners and the different stores/restaurants.
- A monthly update of what is new in downtown Clermont including new businesses that plan to locate here
For more information, visit the CDP’s website or contact Sandy at 352-617-8788 or Sandy@ClermontDowntownPartnership.com.