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River Falls: We can vote to paint the town red and other colors

2010 submitted photo.

River Falls: We can vote to paint the town red and other colors

Downtown River Falls could qualify for a free paint job. Qualifying depends on the volume of testimonials.

The city is one of 100-plus communities in the U.S. and Canada being considered in a contest called "Main Street Matters," sponsored by paint manufacturer Benjamin Moore.

For the 20 communities chosen, the paint manufacturer will not only provide the paint and supplies needed for facades, porches, railings, shutters and other exterior building trims, but the company's color experts will consult on best choices to improve architectural style, regional influences and local historical references. Skilled professional painters will also be used.

Besides River Falls, Sheboygan, De Pere and Oshkosh are the four Wisconsin cities in the contest.

The paint job will only affect Main Street buildings whose owners agree to participate. The city will also have a say. The focus is the downtown area of Main Street and possibly side streets that connect.

Benjamin Moore officials will pick 20 community Main Streets to paint based on the online feedback received from people like you.

The voting website is PaintWhatMatters. Go to "Share You Story" and explain the importance of having a tidy, vibrant Main Street in River Falls. You can also simply vote for the city of your choice by clicking on a North American map.

According to the River Falls Community Development Director Buddy Lucero, who's been in touch with Benjamin Moore, the company is looking for testimonials from citizens about why they value their downtowns. But it will also zero in on how many click on the city of their choice -- so the volume of responses is most critical.

Benjamin Moore's markets this promotion by saying: "Our Main Streets are the vital hubs of our communities...This investment we're making in communities around North America is core to our business and to who we are. Main Streets make us who we are and we're proud to honor that with this effort."

Even as River Falls continues to grow and spread out, its Main Street remains the core -- its geographic identity -- with the Kinnickinnic River running through it. Those of us who appreciate this heritage can register and send in our thoughts and impressions. If enough do, our Main Street could end up much brighter with a fresh coat of paint.

The "Main Street Matters" voting contest ends June 30.

Online Poll: When to say when

The Journal's online poll question this week asked: Was the River Falls City Council right in denying a liquor license for Friends Bar & Grill, 1107 S. Wasson Lane (old PR's Place)?

The very early response shows: NO, this is an uninformed, ill-advised, anti-business should be reconsidered: 80%. YES, the city's liquor license limit had been reached and we don't need another bar in town: 20%.

To add your vote, go to