By Jade Bulecza - bio | email NASHVILLE, GA (WALB) –A south Georgia town is trying to boost its economy in a unique way.
Nashville opened a business incubator that offers a low-risk way for entrepreneurs to start up their own shops.
City leaders say it's attracting shoppers downtown.
Entreprenuers who want to open a business but are worried they won't survive in this economy have a new opportunity in Nashville, a business incubator.
"New entreprenuers can come in and start their business and get their feet wet without a lot of risk and expense to them," said Dawn Morrison, Nashville Better Hometown Director.
Each boutique or shop either new or already established has its own booth.
"It lets people know what I have in my store and it does help my business a lot," said Sue Stone, a business owner.
The Downtown Development Authority received a grant from the Department of Economic Development to refurbish this 1908 building, now known as the Downtown Center that houses the incubator.
"We received $10,000 to do this with and we painted the outside of the building and we're putting new doors and windows onto the building also," said Morrison.
Morrison says when she first became the Nashville Better Hometown Director six years ago they had opened 21 businesses and remodeled 15 properties in two years.
"We've definitely seen a slow down in the economy from that growth and we've had since had several businesses closed due to the economy," said Morrison.
The Downtown Development Authority hopes the entreprenuers currently renting spaces inside the incubator will eventually have businesses of their own.
They've also added an auction to the center every first Thursday of the month and each Friday.
"It has grown to an auction every Friday night and it's just wonderful. It's a wonderful Friday night out friends meeting friends fellowship it's just a good time," said Shel Steckley, Auctioneer.
In addition to helping businesses start up, the incubator has already attracted more shoppers to downtown Nashville.
Nashville also puts on First Thursdays where people can shop, listen to live music, and see the Berrien Cruisers Antique Car Show.
Call (220) 686-9290 or (229) 453-0069 for more information.
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