The Betterment Committee launched the Main street project by hand delivering & picking up an Area Survey, asking residents IF and HOW they would help.  It asked Who would donate money, labor, materials, heavy equipment hours, doors, windows, paint, roofing & electrical materials & skills, curtains, carpet, park benches, food for volunteer workers-and so on.

Residents were asked to SIGN their NAME & PHONE numbers to this survey so we would know WHO to call for WHAT.

Results of this survey clearly proved 99.9% of our area folks wanted & would help to restore the visual charm of our downtown and wanted to capitalize on our rich Irish heritage & town’s history.

Owners of abandoned buildings & lots were contacted, back taxes were forgiven or paid by Betterment, and deeds transferred over to the City & Betterment.

Stores were renamed to reflect original city founders. Paint colors were chosen from the historical paint pallet & built around colors predominant in Ireland.


IRISH ANTICS—Keeping Work Fun

Melrose is gifted with the art of making work fun & a social happening. Main street work days were filled with laughter, potlucks, and Irish antics.


An example: When it came time to paint our buildings, we could not decide which color to paint “Winnie’s Store”. So we painted a little section on the south side one color—and a little section on the north side another color.

Then we rested & flagged down cars going through Main street to take a survey & vote as to which color they wanted it to be. Majority ruled and we love the chosen color.


  Honks, smiles, thumbs up, & shouts of praise were constant from the traffic through town. Some even stopped to help. Regular week end visitors to Lake Rathbun & others told us they couldn’t wait for Friday evenings to see what progress we had made each week.


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Copyright 2012 Merlsoe Community Betterment