The Sign and Sign Maintenance Grant Program is intended to enhance the visual appeal of downtown Wausau's River District by stimulating investment in signage improvements. More specifically, the program does this by financially supporting the efforts of business owners to design, create, install and maintain signage that is effective for their business while complementing the architecture of the building it adorns, the building and signage that surround it, and the overall image of the River District. The Sign Grant awards a 50% reimbursement of total eligible project costs for the creation of new signage, up to a maximum award of $500. The Sign Maintenance rant awards a 50% reimbursement of the total maintenance costs, up to a maximum of $100. Please contact Wausau River District for more details and learn how to apply here or fill your application out today by clicking here.
Promote your business for FREE every week in our "Hot Happenings in The River District." Weekly email to about 1,200 people and posted to Wausau River District's Facebook and Twitter accounts, totaling over 4,000 followers. Subscribe today to start receiving e-mails!
Quarterly meetings with the Wausau Police Department to ensure safety and discuss other conerns, so they are adequately addressed. Please contact The Wausau River District if you would like to attend the next Neighborhood Meeting by clicking here.
Planter Adoption Program Coordination
Another Fun and Unique way to give back to the community while advertising your business. Contact the Wausau River District to reserve your planter by clicking here.
Social Media Interns
Receive assistance from Wausau area high schools to help start, maintain, and/or advance your social media presence
Technology Roundtable Series
Enables you to get the word out to customers and bring them through your door
Business Insights Team
With expertise in Legal, HR and Finance
Will help you navigate the economic development system
Sign up for this monthly e-newsletter for River District business and property owners to keep them informed of happenings in the District.
Business Hours Study
We are proud to have been a part of Wisconsin Main Street's survey on extended business hours in downtowns. Several of our River District businesses participated in the study, which also highlighted First Thursdays' ability to bring new and increased foot traffic to stores in later hours.Thanks to all the businesses that participated and who help make the River District a vibrant place to live, work, play, and shop at all hours of the day. View the Study be clicking here.
Wausau River District Partner Program
The Wausau River District, Inc. (WRD) invites your business to become a Friend of the River District (FORD) under our expanded program. FORDs are outside-District businesses whose services and offerings compliment River District businesses. Partners must invest $1,000 for a year, with an introductory year price of $750. The application will be reviewed by the WRD Organization Committee, which meets on the second Tuesday of each month. You will be notified after the meeting about your acceptance or rejection from the program. Participation may begin as soon as the applicable fees are paid. The base $300 investment gives you access to all services listed below. Even participation, where applicable, necessitates additional investment(s).
Wausau River District looks forward to working with you to continue to develop our thriving and vibrant downtown.
- Business listing, including logo, address, map, and website, listed as a Partner on WausauRiverDistrict.org.
- Social Media event sharing on all applicable and appropriate social media channels.
- Add your business's specials and deals to Hot Happenings, a weekly e-mail to about 1,200 people, and is posted to WRD’s Facebook and Twitter accounts, totaling over 4,000 followers.
- Neighborhood Meetings each quarter with Wausau Police Department to address safety and other concerns.
- Access to WRD staff and interns, including Social Media interns to assist in developing your business’s online presence. WRD staff is available to assist with any business needs, ideas, concerns, or suggestions, including project partnerships and collaborations.
- Promotional Roundtable Series to explore various methods of reaching your customers to help bring them through your door.
- Our Business Insights Team is available to assist new and expanding businesses on a limited-term basis in the areas of Legal, HR, and Finance.
- Development Ambassadors to help you navigate City processes as well as the social and political landscape of the District.
Additionally, WRD events are open for participation as well:
· Downtown Wausau Dining Weeks (restaurants and eateries only), last week of April and (last week of October? First or second week of November?) This week offers 3-course price-fix menus for lunch and dinner to showcase the many local restaurants in and around downtown Wausau.
· First Thursdays, 4-8pm May-September. A monthly social-retail event focused on bringing people into businesses they’ve not yet explored, while showcasing local artistic and musical talent on the streets throughout the event area. Upon completing a scavenger hunt, customers have a chance to win a $50 gift certificate to any participating business.
· Downtown Open House, 10am-5pm second weekend in May (5/13/17). A self-guided tour of downtown Wausau’s unique cultural and historical landmarks, all of which are open to the general public and may include additional activities or tours.
· Downtown Employee Appreciation Week, second week of June (6/12/17-6/16/17). A week to celebrate the downtown employees who shop and dine at local establishments throughout the week. Activities (all free for downtown employees) range from Yoga in the Clouds, to Office Games, to Wausau’s Largest Coffee Break, and much more.
· Sidewalk Sales, Second weekend in July (7/13/17-7/16/17). The biggest downtown sale of the year! In combination with Chalkfest and Balloon and Rib Fest, stores create a festive atmosphere placing merchandise out on the sidewalks.
· Christmas on First Open House (open to near west side businesses only), dates TBD, generally the first weekend in November. This event allows near west side businesses to preview their holiday offerings. Customers have a chance to win a gift basket compiled by participants for filling out a punch card.
· Small Business Saturday, Saturday after Thanksgiving (11/25/17). The original #ShopSmall campaign started here. Nationally, this evet draws tens of millions of people into local stores and in 2015 created $5.7 billion in sales.
Other projects of interest:
· Wausau WaterColor Project, summers. $20 gets you your own waterproof stencil in front of your store. While not advertising, these are fun, positive, inspiring messages that makes rainy day shopping (or walking) downtown more enjoyable.
For more information, please contact Elizabeth Brodek, firstname.lastname@example.org or (715) 297- 1829.
Women-Owned Business Study
Women-owned and -managed businesses have always been an important part of the small business landscape. From side businesses on farms to jointly managed small-scale retail operations and multinational corporations, women have played a prominent role in even the earliest aspects of the U.S. business ecosystem. Today, women entrepreneurs are one of the fastest-growing segments of business owners nationally, outpacing openings of businesses owned by men by 150 percent in the past two decades. Click Here to Read Full Report.