Janis and Paul Beavin, Robin and David Sullivan, and the North Gwinnett Arts Association representatives accept Downtown Excellence Awards at the 2018 Georgia Downtown Association Conference at Chateau Elan. Courtesy City of Suwanee

Suwanee wins two downtown excellence awards

Suwanee won Downtown Excellence Awards in the Volunteer and Organization categories at the 2018 Georgia Downtown Association Conference at Chateau Elan.

Janis and Paul Beavin and Robin and David Sullivan were named Volunteers of the Year for their work on the Suwanee Fest Planning Committee. The Beavins and Sullivans have led a 20-member Suwanee Fest volunteer committee for the past ten and five years, respectively.

The Suwanee Welcome Center partnership was selected as the Organization winner.

In a joint venture, Suwanee and North Gwinnett Arts Association (NGAA) entered into a partnership in 2016 that allows the NGAA to have gallery and class space in Suwanee Town Center, while also creating and staffing a welcome center for the city.

“The joint welcome and arts center allows the city to have a presence that extends beyond the normal business hours,” said Marty Allen, Suwanee City Manager. “City Hall is closed on weekends, which is when a large percentage of visitors are in Town Center. A welcome center affords us the opportunity to serve as ambassadors to visitors and leveraging a collaboration with the NGAA provides a welcoming presence.”

The welcome center in the art gallery is funded out of the hotel/motel tax fund. The 2,297 square-foot facility features art classes, workshops, and a gallery.

The Downtown Excellence Awards recognize and promote the outstanding achievements of Georgia’s local downtown development and revitalizing organizations in Georgia’s communities. The Beavins, Sullivans, and NGAA staff and volunteers were honored at a reception and ceremony at Chateau Elan in Braselton, GA during the 2018 Georgia Downtown Association.

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