Pop Star #1 – Neil Pringle

April 6th, 2018 – Neil Pringle (Left) of Pringle Brothers Construction presents a cheque sponsoring the Kemptville Pop-Up Shop Program to Kim Smalridge (BIA Director) and Shulamit Ber Levtov of Compassionate Support for Stressful Times

I’m very grateful to the Pop-Up Shop program that helped me move into my first full-time and independent office space. This enabled me to expand from a one-person show to a clinic that can better serve my community. Also, the exposure my clinic has received as the result of my participation in the program was priceless. – Shulamit Ber Levtov, Owner, Compassionate Support in Stressful Times

Based on the positive results in 2017 , the Board of Management of the Old Town Kemptville BIA approved the Kemptville Pop-Up Shop Program as a permanent program of the BIA and funds were provided for it in the 2018 Operating Budget. In May of 2018 Council cut funding for the Program

Excerpts from  an Editorial written by Neil Pringle and published over a year ago in the North Grenville Times (March 8th, 2017):

” . . .  Council has paid a lot of lip service to the idea of re-vitalizing the old town core of its community, and, indeed, a few years ago they tore up Prescott Street for a year to beautify it, which inadvertently crippled many of the businesses there. Yes, the street looks much better without the powerlines, and the tiny park on the corner of Prescott and Clothier is beautiful, but without real support for the people trying to compete with the corporations we begged to come in, these efforts are wasted. There’s lots of talk about being a family-oriented, unique community that blends modern convenience and old-town charm, but when the chips are down, the support from council is conspicuously absent. Shame on you, council.

Unfortunately, I can do nothing about the Starbucks, except vow to never, ever, ever spend $5 on a coffee there. I can do something to help the BIA, however, and so I put this challenge forward to you, my fellow residents and business owners in North Grenville. I will pledge $500 of my own hard-earned money to this pop-up store initiative, and I challenge each of you to make a real effort to support the local businesses here, by attending the events that are held in Old Town, and shopping there regularly, even when there’s no event going on, even if it’s just for a cup of coffee, where the profits from the coffee don’t go to Seattle. You see, I’ve made points about the lack of vision and leadership by town council, but the other half of the problem is us. It’s easy to point fingers or wish things were different, but if each of us doesn’t make an effort and support our local businesses, they will continue to disappear until there’s absolutely nothing unique about Kemptville, and it becomes another Kanata, Barrhaven, or any other faceless suburb.. . . “

A full 2017 Kemptville Pop-Up Shop Evaluation Report is available for download