ELLSWORTH -- Grab a hat, mittens and a jacket and take a journey back in time through East End’s Broadway Street.
Ellsworth Area Chamber of Commerce recently released the Broadway Street Historic Walking Tour. The brochure explores local buildings and the area’s business history.
The short self-guided tour includes five stops. Each has a section on the brochure explaining the various businesses that once used each building and the year the space was built. Some buildings go back to 1896, according to the brochure.
The brochure was funded by AARP’s Community Challenge Grant, which the Ellsworth chamber received this summer. AARP received more than 1,660 applications, and the chamber was among 159 awardees.
The purpose is to help communities make improvements and start long-term projects to help residents. The brochure's goal is to get people into the downtown area to connect with one another.
“Everything kind of circled back to Design Ellsworth. That was a point that was reiterated over and over again, that the community really wanted something to be done with that part of town,” chamber executive support team member, Becky Beissel said.
After some research and help from the Pierce County Historical Association, the completed brochure was announced in late November. Old pictures of the buildings are included inside and allow tourists to compare then and now.
“Just to see the photos of what the buildings looked like in their original form, I was awestruck,” Beissel said. “The buildings were so beautiful,” she added.
Funds from the grant also went to other projects to bring more life to Ellsworth’s East End. Some of the funds have gone to the beautification of Broadway Street, such as adding flower baskets, light pole banners, benches, window clings, art murals on the ICE Occasions’s building and trash receptacles. The grant also helped fund the Ellsworth Pop-up program.
Broadway Street Historic Walking Tour brochures can be found at various places around town, including the public library, Ellsworth Creamery and each pop-up program shop.